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New code sets roadmap for teacher conduct

The Department of Education has published a Code of Conduct for Teachers to serve as “a guiding compass” on professional and ethical issues.
At the launch yesterday at No.6 Convent Place, the Minster for Education, Dr John Cortes, welcomed the development.
“Education is not just about exams but much more than that,” he said, adding that if teachers lead by example this will benefit the whole community.
The code sets out the department’s ethical values, will give advice on professional relationships and will encourage teachers to aspire to values of honesty and integrity. In addition, it will give direction with regards to the use of social media.
“Schools are not preparing children for life, schools are life,” said the acting Director for Education, Darren Grech.
He also stressed that about 98% of teachers do not have to worry about the Code of Conduct because they are already adhering to it naturally, but that the remaining 2% do have something to worry about.
He said that this does not mean the 2% teachers will lose their jobs, but that everything will be done to work with the teacher, assist the teacher and ascertain why there are failings.
The ethical values underpinning the standards include teachers promoting equality, demonstrating spiritual and cultural values, diversity, gender and sexuality.
On professional values and relationships, the teachers should seek to motivate, inspire and celebrate effort and success, recognise the specific learning needs of pupils and to seek positive relationships with the students and their parents.
The code makes clear that a teacher’s integrity is important, highlighting the need to avoid conflict between professional and personal life.
Among many other obligations, the code calls on teachers to uphold the reputation and standing of the profession both in and out of school.

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