(Adapted from the Code of Ethics of the Education Profession in Florida and Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education Profession in Florida)
1. Our school values the worth and dignity of every person, the pursuit of truth, devotion to excellence, acquisition of knowledge, and the nurture of democratic citizenship. Essential to the achievement of these standards are the freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal opportunity for all.
2. Our primary concern is the student and the development of the student's potential. Employees will therefore strive for professional growth and will seek to exercise the best professional judgment and integrity.
3. Concern for the student requires that our instructional personnel:
a. Shall make reasonable effort to protect the student from conditions harmful to learning and/or to the student's mental and/or physical health and/or safety.
b. Shall not unreasonably restrain a student from independent action in pursuit of learning. c. Shall not unreasonably deny a student access to diverse points of view.
d. Shall not intentionally suppress or distort subject matter relevant to a student's academic program.
e. Shall not intentionally expose a student to unnecessary embarrassment or disparagement.
f. Shall not intentionally violate or deny a student's legal rights.
g. Shall not harass or discriminate against any student on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, marital status, handicapping condition, sexual orientation, or social and family background and shall make reasonable effort to assure that each student is protected from harassment or discrimination.
h. Shall not exploit a relationship with a student for personal gain or advantage.
i. Shall keep in confidence personally identifiable information obtained in the course of professional service, unless disclosure serves professional purposes or is required by law.
HOW TO REPORT MISCONDUCT
All employees, educational support employees, and administrators have an obligation to report misconduct by instructional personnel and school administrators, which affects the health, safety, or welfare of a student.
Examples of misconduct include obscene language, drug and alcohol use, disparaging comments, prejudice or bigotry, sexual innuendo, cheating or testing violations, physical aggression, and accepting or offering favors.
Reports of misconduct of employees should be made to
- Marie Tapia 786 389 9538
- Mirelys Ortega 786 362 5115
- Gonzalo Munoz: 786 389 9535
• Document the activities or details of the event
• Secure evidence (if applicable)
WHO SHOULD BE REPORTED?
All Instructional Personnel and School Administrators are covered by these ethical standards. Instructional Personnel and School Administrators include:
• Classroom teachers
• Substitute teachers
• Librarians, guidance counselors and social workers
• Career specialists and school psychologists
• Administrative and educational directors
For complete definitions, see Florida Statute Section 1012.01(2) & (3)(c), available at www.leg.state.fl.us. Any Instructional Personnel or School Administrator who engages in misconduct affecting the health, welfare or safety of a student should be reported.
FAILURE TO REPORT MISCONDUCT
Possible penalties for instructional personnel or site administrators who fail to report misconduct may include, at the discretion of tangerine Montessori:
· Write up.
· Suspension with or without pay.
· Termination of employment.
Training on the Standards for Ethical Conduct is mandatory for all instructional personnel and school administrators.
FLORIDA STATUTES AND RULES/ LIABILITY PROTECTIONS
Florida Statutes s. 39.203 states that any person reporting in good faith any instance of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect to the Department of Children and Families or law enforcement, shall be immune from civil or criminal liability, so long as that person is the not suspected of the abuse, abandonment, or neglect; and that no person who reports child abuse, abandonment, or neglect such be subjected to reprisal or discharge because of reporting child abuse, abandonment, or neglect.
Florida Statute s. 768.095 states that an employer who discloses information about a former or current employee to a prospective employer of the former or current employee upon the request of the prospective employer is immune from civil liability for such disclosure or its consequences unless clear and convincing evidence shows that the information was knowingly false or violated any civil right of the former or current employee protected by Florida laws pertaining to civil rights and fair housing, and other law contained in Chapter 760, Florida Statutes.
Florida Statutes s. 1006.061 states all employees and agents of the district school board, charter schools and private schools that accept scholarship students, have an obligation to report misconduct by an instructional personnel member or school administrator.
Florida Statutes s. 1012.33 outlines disciplinary procedures regarding district employment contracts with instructional personnel staff, supervisors and school principals.
Florida Statutes s. 1012.795 provides the Education Practices Commission the authority to issue disciplinary action against an individual’s Florida Educator certificate
Florida Statutes s. 1012.796 provides authority for the Department of Education to investigate and prosecute allegations of educator misconduct.
Florida Statute s. 1012.01 defines public school instructional personnel, administrative personnel, school volunteers, education support employees and managers.
The full text of Florida Statutes are available on-line at: www.leg.state.fl.us.
NOTICE REGARDING REPORTING CHILD ABUSE, ABANDONMENT, AND NEGLECT
Under Chapter 39 of Florida Law, all tangerine Montessori Employees have an affirmative duty to report actual or suspected cases of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect, and to cooperate with child protective investigations and all other provisions of law relating to child abuse, abandonment, or neglect.
If you see actual child abuse, abandonment, or neglect:
Under Florida law, you have immunity from liability if you report such cases in good faith.
Recognizing Child Abuse, Abandonment, and Neglect
Signs of Physical Abuse:
The child may have unexplained:
– bruises, welts, cuts, or other injuries
– broken bones
A child experiencing physical abuse may:
– seem withdrawn or depressed
– seem afraid to go home or may run away
– shy away from physical contact
– be aggressive
– wear inappropriate clothing to hide injuries
Signs of Sexual Abuse:
The child may have:
– torn, stained or bloody underwear
– trouble walking or sitting
– pain or itching in genital area
– a sexually transmitted disease
A child experiencing sexual abuse may:
– have unusual knowledge of sex or act seductively
– fear a particular person
– seem withdrawn or depressed
– gain or lose weight suddenly
– shy away from physical contact
– run away from home
Signs of Neglect:
The child may have:
– unattended medical needs
– little or no supervision at home
– poor hygiene
– appear underweight
A child experiencing neglect may:
– be frequently tired or hungry
– steal food
– appear overly needy for adult attention
Look for the Patterns:
Serious abuse usually involves a combination of factors. While a single sign may not be
significant, a pattern of physical or behavioral signs is a serious indicator and should be
If a child tells YOU about abuse:
• Be a good listener. Show that you understand and believe what the child tells you.
• Encourage, but don’t pressure him/her to talk. Ask open ended questions.
• Be supportive. Tell the child he/she did the right thing by coming to you. Stress that he/she is not to blame. Let the child know that you want to help.
• Don’t overreact. This can frighten the child or prevent him/her from telling you more.
• Do not talk negatively about the suspected abuser in front of the child.
• Document and report it. Document your conversation as soon as you can. If possible, write down the child’s exact words.
• Don’t delay. Never assume someone else will report the abuse. The sooner it’s reported, the sooner the child and their family can be helped.