The relationship between stress levels and job satisfaction amongst high school educators in De Aar (Northern Cape)
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A large number of studies show that educators are exposed to workloads that result particularly in stress. According to Olivier and Venter (2003), stress is considered to be the main factor contributing to job-related illnesses, early retirement, job dissatisfaction and absenteeism. Teaching, has without a doubt become a more demanding and stressful job. The lack of discipline in schools, abolishment of corporal punishment, large pupilteacher ratios and a new curriculum approach all contribute to raising the stress levels of teachers (Ngidi amp; Sibaya, 2002). Stanton, Bachiochi, Robie, Perez and Smith (2002 cited in Brewer amp; McMahan-Landers, 2003) is of the view that job stress is an antecedent of job satisfaction but the two constructs have been treated as related, yet they are different. The aim of this study is to determine the relationship between stress levels and job satisfaction amongst high school educators in De Aar as well as to determine whether biographical variables (namely, gender, age, tenure, marital status and number of children) have an impact on job satisfaction and stress levels. The researcher hopes that the findings would give the Department of Education in the Northern Cape an idea of the stress levels and job satisfaction experienced by high school educators in De Aar so that interventions can be implemented to issues proactively. The sample consisted of 86 educators employed at four high schools in De Aar. A biographical questionnaire, the Job Satisfaction Survey (JSS) and Stress Diagnostic Survey (SDS) were administered to assess respondents stress and job satisfaction levels. Informed consent was obtained from the various participants and anonymity of participation was ensured. Statistical analyses included inferential (Pearson's Product Moment Correlation Coefficient, Analysis of Variance T-Tests) as well as descriptive statistics. The results of the study indicate that there is a statistically significant, inverse relationship between stress levels and job satisfaction amongst high school educators in De Aar. Furthermore, the results indicate that there are statistically significant differences in stress levels as well as job satisfaction of high school educators on the basis of their biographical characteristics. The chapter concludes with presenting limitations of the study and putting forth recommendations for future research.