Ethical Dilemmas in Early Childhood Education

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Dilemma 1

Approach 1

In order to manage the dilemma, I would act according to the ‘Code of Ethical Conduct and Statement of Commitment’. The timeframe for the approach is one week.  I would manage the dilemma in a confidential way. As a first step of the approach, I would invite the parent into the classroom, and tell him that parents and teacher must cooperate, in order to enable the child to develop properly (NAYYC 3). Then, I would tell him that I want parents to be interested in the educational process, and to participate in it, by asking different questions about their children, and about their program of education. However, I would tell the parent that he must be interested only in his own child.

If the parent will start asking questions regarding the child of another parent, I would encourage him to ask questions only about his own child once more. For example, I would ask the parent, if he is interested what his child was doing today during the recess. If the parent will give the uninterested answer, and will start asking questions regarding the other child again, I would continue my approach, and will start telling him about his own child, even if he is not interested in this topic. I will speak with this parent daily for one hour during one whole week. By the end of the week, the parent is supposed to change his behavior, and show interest only in his own child.

Approach 2

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The trustful family-teacher relationship is a crucial element of education. Family of every child must be equally respected by a teacher (NAYYC 4). It is important to understand that every family has dignity. A teacher cannot reveal the personal data on a child, because it may damage the well-being of a child (NAYYC 4). Thus, any information, gathered about a child and its familyis confidential. Due to the fact, that this parent daily asks the questions about the same child, which is not his own, my approach will be conveyed daily. The time frame for this approach is two weeks. During the first week of the approach, I will try to make the parent more interested in his own child. I would ask the parent whether he agrees that he should pay attention only to his own child, and to the way how his child behaves in the classroom, and to the progress he makes in education, instead of being interested in someone else’s child more.

During the second week of the approach, I will show the parent why he must stop asking questions about the child, which is not his own. For example, when the parent will ask me questions regarding the occupation of Karin’s parents, I would ask this parent whether he would be happy if Karin’s parents were asking me the same questions about him. If he asks whether Karin’s parents are together, I would ask how this parent will feel if Karin’s mother was asking me the same question about him.

On the last day of the approach, I would ask this parent to imagine that he is one of the Karin’s parents, and would ask him all the questions about his child, which he was asking me daily before the implementation of this approach. For example, I would ask whether his child receives public assistance. After the implementation of this approach, the parent will understand that he was intruding into the private life of another family.

Dilemma 2

Approach 1

It is inappropriate to talk publicly about personal issues of other people. This ethical dilemma should be managed within the time frame of one day. First of all, I would invite the teacher, who is publicly speaking about private issues, into my classroom. I will explain to this teacher that the argumennt between Peter’s parents is their own business. I would ask this teacher to imagine that it was he/she who was having this argument with his/her partner. Then, I would ask him/her to imagine whether he/she would be happy to hear that teachers and students are openly speaking about this argument. I would also tell this teacher to imagine how the child would feel if all the parents, teachers, and his classmates will know about the problems his parents are having.

Approach 2

Everyone should respect the privacy of other people. Every teacher has responsibilities not only for children, but also for their families, for the society in general, and for his colleagues (NAYYC 2). Teachers should aim to be an example of a person who abides to the ethical norms. The teacher is not allowed to harm a child in any possible way (NAYYC 3). Openly speaking about personal issues, which the parents of the child have, is disrespectful towards the child and its family. The fact that this kind of behavior is common for this educational center is inappropriate. I would manage this ethical dilemma within the time frame of three weeks. During the first week, I would individually remind teachers that ethical norms do not allow openly speaking about personal issues of other people. If there is a conflict between the parents of a child, teachers can cooperate to help this child (NAYYC 4). However, this is a delicate situation, which should be treated with respect to the privacy of the family.

During the second week of the approach, I would control the teachers. A teacher does not have the right to share any private information about a child, or its family, with people who do not have the right to know this information (NAYYC 8). If I am concerned about the behavior of another teacher in the center, I should act with respect to my colleague (NAYYC 5). I should express my remarks to a teacher in private.

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