Professional ethics and values are critical for school teachers as they play a significant role in shaping the lives and minds of young students.
Here are some of the reasons why professional ethics and values are important for school teachers:
Ms T is a confidante for students and colleagues alike. They share their problems with her without a speck of hesitation. This allows her to resolve issues and to ensure the holistic development of her learners.
Teachers are responsible for educating and guiding students, and they must be trustworthy and credible in their actions and decisions. Adhering to professional ethics and values helps teachers establish trust with students, parents, colleagues, and the community.
Mr F is known for being fair. He never favours ‘intelligent’ students and provides equal opportunity to all students, irrespective of their learning levels or their backgrounds. As a result, all his students work really hard, individually and as a group to achieve their learning goals.
Teachers must avoid discrimination and bias in their teaching practices. Professional ethics and values help teachers treat all students fairly and equally, regardless of their race, gender, religion, or socioeconomic status.
Ms S comes across as a strict teacher but, somehow, her learners love and respect her more than any other teacher. She makes them realise the importance of following rules and sticking to them. She is also sensitive to the individual needs of her learners and ensures that she offers them support whenever they need it.
Teachers must create a safe and supportive learning environment that fosters learning and growth. Professional ethics and values help teachers establish boundaries, respect privacy, and maintain a positive and respectful classroom atmosphere.
Mr P is a lifelong learner. He constantly engages in professional development activities to hone his teaching skills. He has subscribed to journals and magazines that keep him up-to-date with the latest developments in his field.
Teachers must continue to learn and grow throughout their careers. Professional ethics and values encourage teachers to seek professional development opportunities and stay up-to-date with new teaching methodologies and technologies.
Ms E is a by-the-book teacher. She is a living example of how legal and ethical standards are followed. As a result, she has become a role model for every student, teacher and staff member. By upholding the standards, she does justice to the goal of teaching and learning, i.e., to impart knowledge and develop skills in learners to help them achieve their full potential in the real world.
Teachers must abide by legal and ethical standards, such as maintaining student confidentiality, respecting copyright laws, and avoiding conflicts of interest. Professional ethics and values provide a framework for teachers to make sound decisions and act with integrity.
In summary, professional ethics and values are essential for educators to establish trust, ensure fairness, create a safe learning environment, promote personal and professional growth, and uphold legal and ethical standards. By understanding the importance of professional ethics and values, educators can make a positive impact on their students' lives and society as a whole.
If you want to dive deeper into this area of teaching and learning, please feel free to check out our course on Ethics and Values.