Week 1 (26 to 30 November 2012)

Country experiences on code development

“Codes of conduct” is the name given to documents that formulate rules for ‘good behaviour’ that apply to the teaching profession. They often include two major components, namely:  “the ethical norms (or values) that should underpin the profession; and the standards of professional conduct that should guide the members of the profession in their daily activities in working with various stakeholders, i.e. pupils, parents, colleagues, and employers” (Poisson, 2011) They are presented as key tools to address a variety of attitudes, such as discrimination or violence against pupils, which cannot be easily solved through existing texts and legislations.

More and more countries are in the process of developing such codes, or reviewing existing ones, as illustrated by this world wide map.

However, few assessments have been conducted on the relevance of their content, on the efficiency of the mechanisms used to enforce them, and on the capacity of the codes to reduce misconducts. Within this framework, the main objective of the first week were to take stock of existing experiences – both positive and negative – regarding the development of teacher codes of conduct in the participants’ respective countries. 

More specifically, the e-forum participants were invited to answer the two following questions, documenting their responses:

  • What institution initiated the development of a code of conduct in their country?
  • What are the major difficulties encountered in the enforcement of this code?

They were invited to include a copy of their country code in an attachment, and to refer to available literature (articles, assessment reports, etc.) whenever available.

>> Download the report of the week (in french)

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