Ethical norms are the moral standards that help us judge good from bad or right from wrong and living morally. This involves articulating the good habits or character that we should have, the consequences of our behavior on us and others and the duties that we are supposed to follow. Ethical issues touch on the basis of an individual belief and they are bound to differ with individuals depending on cultural and social factors of the individual. McKinney (2004) explains that the primary ethical considerations for teachers in a K-8 education setting is a form of applied ethics that evaluates ethical guidelines and moral issues that can come up in a classroom environment.
The following section will highlight McKinney (2004) ten main principles which teachers in K-8 classes are supposed to follow and adhere to:
Establish the significance of academic integrity
Schools are committed to pursing integrity and truth; teachers in K-8 should confirm and reestablish the need for integrity and truth based on particular main values such as honest civility and diligence. Teachers need to show and encourage students to practice this.
Promote love of learning
Teachers in K-8 have an ethical duty to reinforce and foster better class environment for learning. Many children will succeed and thrive in an environment where learning and schooling is viewed as challenging, useful, pertinent and fair.
Treat children as ends in teaching
Teachers in K-8 should treat their students as being an end and not means children require personal attention and thoughtfulness. The students will in general respond through respecting what the teacher’s values and norms and be committed to academics
Foster an atmosphere of trust within the classroom
Many students are young and require and value an atmosphere where trust is freely earned as it is given.
Enhance student accountability for integrity in academics
Young students want to learn in schools where integrity justice and respect is adhered to, while dishonest is punished. With correct direction and leadership, students can cultivate strong accountability to assist in promoting and protecting high levels of integrity in academic work.
Formulate just and appropriate assessment forms
Students expect to be assessed with fairness using appropriate methods. Teachers in K-8 classes should use, and regularly modify forms of evaluation and tests which need active thought and enhance learning activities for the students.
Challenge any dishonest in learning when it happens
Children see how teachers act and what values they hold. Teachers who overlook trivialized dishonest in academics, convey a message that, the teacher do not value core values of academic and that these core values are not worth following.
In addition to this the teachers should:
• Assist in defining and supporting entire school academic integrity and honesty
• Limit chances for students to participate in dishonesty in class and school as a whole
• Clarify your expectations for class and students in particular
The classroom and teaching environment in general during the 21st century have become more complex and demanding. Consequently, the need for more ethical teaching behavior, actions and processes is increasing. As McKinney (2004) notes pressure has been mounted on the teachers in a K-8 to observe and improve their ethics through laws and refined public initiatives. The variety and extent of ethical issues in teaching shows the extent to which ethical values differ and need to be upheld. This paper has outline several main ethical issues that teachers in K-8 will should follow to establish better values in their class room
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