Ethics in education: the role of teacher codes
As for any profession, the education profession follows certain general standards of practice (either implicit or explicit), such as equality of treatment and fulfilment of duties. Problems of ethics in teacher behaviour include a number of malpractices, such as mismanagement of funds and absenteeism. Several countries have developed teacher codes of conduct or standards for the teaching profession, which aim at improving ethics in the educational sector. In some cases, public authorities are responsible for the development of these codes and standards and for their enforcement; in other cases, this responsibility has been given to a self regulatory body. This book presents various initiatives taken in this area. The first section describes the experience of the state of Ontario (Canada), where standards of practice and ethical standards have been developed by the Ontario College of Teachers. The second section presents the case of three South Asian countries, namely: Bangladesh, India and Nepal, where codes of conduct have been in use for some time. The third section includes a sample of teacher codes elaborated by a selected number of countries, such as Australia, China (Hong Kong) and the United Kingdom (Scotland).