Statement of Commitment is not part of the Code but is a personal acknowledgement of an individual’s willingness to embrace the distinctive values and moral

155 KB – 9 Pages

PAGE – 1 ============
Code of Ethical Conduct and Statement of Commitment A position statement of the National Association for the Education of Young Children PreambleNAEYC recognizes that those who work with young children face many daily decisions that have moral and ethical implications. The NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct offers guidelines for responsible behavior and sets forth a common basis for resolving the principal ethical dilemmas encountered in early childhood care and education. The Statement of Commitment is not part of the Code but is a personal acknowledgement of an individual™s willingness to embrace the distinctive values and moral obligations of the The primary focus of the Code is on daily practice with children and their families in programs for children from birth through 8 years of age, such as infant/toddler programs, preschool and prekindergarten programs, child care centers, hospital and child life settings, family child care homes, kindergartens, and primary classrooms. When the issues involve young children, then these provisions also apply to specialists who do not work directly with children, including program administrators, parent educators, early childhood monitoring and licensing. (Note: See also the fiCode of Ethi-cal Conduct: Supplement for Early Childhood Adult Educa -tors,fl online at pdf. and the fiCode of Ethical Conduct: Supplement for Early Childhood Program Administrators,fl online at http://www. Core values Standards of ethical behavior in early childhood care and education are based on commitment to the follow -ing core values that are deeply rooted in the history of the field of early childhood care and education. We have made a commitment to¥ Appreciate childhood as a unique and valuable stage of the human life cycle ¥ Base our work on knowledge of how children develop and learn ¥ Appreciate and support the bond between the child and family¥ Recognize that children are best understood and sup -ported in the context of family, culture,* community, and society ¥ Respect the dignity, worth, and uniqueness of each individual (child, family member, and colleague) ¥ Respect diversity in children, families, and colleagues ¥ Recognize that children and adults achieve their full potential in the context of relationships that are based on trust and respect * The term culture includes ethnicity, racial identity, economic level, family structure, language, and religious and political beliefs, which profoundly influence each childÕs development and relation -ship to the world.Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children POSITION STATEMENT Revised April 2005, Endorsed by the Association for Childhood Education International and Southern Early Childhood Association Adopted by the National Association for Family Child Care

PAGE – 2 ============
2Conceptual framework The Code sets forth a framework of professional respon -sibilities in four sections. Each section addresses an area of professional relationships: (1) with children, (2) with families, (3) among colleagues, and (4) with the commu-nity and society. Each section includes an introduction to the primary responsibilities of the early childhood practitioner in that context. The introduction is followed by a set of ideals (I) that reflect exemplary professional practice and by a set of principles (P) describing prac-tices that are required, prohibited, or permitted. The ideals reflect the aspirations of practitioners. The principles guide conduct and assist practitioners in resolving ethical dilemmas.* Both ideals and principles are intended to direct practitioners to those questions which, when responsibly answered, can provide the basis for conscientious decision making. While the Code provides specific direction for addressing some ethical dilemmas, many others will require the practitioner to combine the guidance of the Code with professional judgment. The ideals and principles in this Code present a shared framework of professional responsibility that affirms our commitment to the core values of our field. The Code publicly acknowledges the responsibilities that we in the field have assumed, and in so doing sup-ports ethical behavior in our work. Practitioners who face situations with ethical dimensions are urged to seek guidance in the applicable parts of this Code and in the spirit that informs the whole. Often Òthe right answerÓÑthe best ethical course of action to takeÑis not obvious. There may be no readily apparent, positive way to handle a situation. When one important value contradicts another, we face an ethical dilemma. When we face a dilemma, it is our professional responsibility to consult the Code and all relevant par -ties to find the most ethical resolution. Section IEthical Responsibilities to Children Childhood is a unique and valuable stage in the human life cycle. Our paramount responsibility is to provide care and education in settings that are safe, healthy, nurturing, and responsive for each child. We are commit -ted to supporting childrenÕs development and learning; respecting individual differences; and helping children learn to live, play, and work cooperatively. We are also committed to promoting childrenÕs self-awareness, com -petence, self-worth, resiliency, and physical well-being. IdealsI-1.1ÑTo be familiar with the knowledge base of early childhood care and education and to stay informed through continuing education and training. I-1.2ÑTo base program practices upon current knowl -edge and research in the field of early childhood educa -tion, child development, and related disciplines, as well as on particular knowledge of each child. I-1.3ÑTo recognize and respect the unique qualities, abilities, and potential of each child.I-1.4ÑTo appreciate the vulnerability of children and their dependence on adults.I-1.5ÑTo create and maintain safe and healthy settings that foster childrenÕs social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development and that respect their dignity and their contributions. I-1.6ÑTo use assessment instruments and strategies that are appropriate for the children to be assessed, that are used only for the purposes for which they were designed, and that have the potential to benefit children. I-1.7ÑTo use assessment information to understand and support childrenÕs development and learning, to support instruction, and to identify children who may need additional services. I-1.8ÑTo support the right of each child to play and learn in an inclusive environment that meets the needs of children with and without disabilities. I-1.9ÑTo advocate for and ensure that all children, including those with special needs, have access to the support services needed to be successful. I-1.10ÑTo ensure that each childÕs culture, language, ethnicity, and family structure are recognized and val -ued in the program. I-1.11ÑTo provide all children with experiences in a language that they know, as well as support children in maintaining the use of their home language and in learning English. I-1.12ÑTo work with families to provide a safe and smooth transition as children and families move from one program to the next. * There is not necessarily a corresponding principle for each ideal. Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

PAGE – 3 ============
3PrinciplesP-1.1ÑAbove all, we shall not harm children. We shall not participate in practices that are emotionally dam -aging, physically harmful, disrespectful, degrading, dangerous, exploitative, or intimidating to children. This principle has precedence over all others in this Code.P-1.2ÑWe shall care for and educate children in positive emotional and social environments that are cognitively stimulating and that support each childÕs culture, lan -guage, ethnicity, and family structure. P-1.3ÑWe shall not participate in practices that discrimi -nate against children by denying benefits, giving special advantages, or excluding them from programs or activities on the basis of their sex, race, national origin, immigration status, preferred home language, religious beliefs, medical condition, disability, or the marital status/family structure, sexual orientation, or religious beliefs or other affiliations of their families. (Aspects of this principle do not apply in programs that have a law -ful mandate to provide services to a particular popula -tion of children.) P-1.4ÑWe shall use two-way communications to involve all those with relevant knowledge (including families and staff) in decisions concerning a child, as appropri -ate, ensuring confidentiality of sensitive information. (See also P-2.4.)P-1.5ÑWe shall use appropriate assessment systems, which include multiple sources of information, to provide information on childrenÕs learning and devel -opment.P-1.6ÑWe shall strive to ensure that decisions such as those related to enrollment, retention, or assignment to special education services, will be based on mul -tiple sources of information and will never be based on a single assessment, such as a test score or a single observation. P-1.7ÑWe shall strive to build individual relationships with each child; make individualized adaptations in teaching strategies, learning environments, and cur -ricula; and consult with the family so that each child benefits from the program. If after such efforts have been exhausted, the current placement does not meet a childÕs needs, or the child is seriously jeopardizing the ability of other children to benefit from the pro -gram, we shall collaborate with the childÕs family and appropriate specialists to determine the additional services needed and/or the placement option(s) most likely to ensure the childÕs success. (Aspects of this principle may not apply in programs that have a lawful mandate to provide services to a particular population of children.) P-1.8ÑWe shall be familiar with the risk factors for and symptoms of child abuse and neglect, including physi-cal, sexual, verbal, and emotional abuse and physical, emotional, educational, and medical neglect. We shall know and follow state laws and community procedures that protect children against abuse and neglect. P-1.9ÑWhen we have reasonable cause to suspect child abuse or neglect, we shall report it to the appropri -ate community agency and follow up to ensure that appropriate action has been taken. When appropriate, parents or guardians will be informed that the referral will be or has been made.P-1.10ÑWhen another person tells us of his or her suspicion that a child is being abused or neglected, we shall assist that person in taking appropriate action in order to protect the child. P-1.11ÑWhen we become aware of a practice or situa -tion that endangers the health, safety, or well-being of children, we have an ethical responsibility to protect children or inform parents and/or others who can. Section IIEthical Responsibilities to Families Families* are of primary importance in childrenÕs de -velopment. Because the family and the early childhood practitioner have a common interest in the childÕs well- being, we acknowledge a primary responsibility to bring about communication, cooperation, and collaboration between the home and early childhood program in ways that enhance the childÕs development. IdealsI-2.1ÑTo be familiar with the knowledge base related to working effectively with families and to stay informed through continuing education and training. I-2.2ÑTo develop relationships of mutual trust and cre -ate partnerships with the families we serve. I-2.3ÑTo welcome all family members and encourage them to participate in the program, including involve -ment in shared decision making. * The term family may include those adults, besides parents, with the responsibility of being involved in educating, nurturing, and advocating for the child.Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

PAGE – 4 ============
4I-2.4ÑTo listen to families, acknowledge and build upon their strengths and competencies, and learn from families as we support them in their task of nurturing children. I-2.5ÑTo respect the dignity and preferences of each family and to make an effort to learn about its struc -ture, culture, language, customs, and beliefs to ensure a culturally consistent environment for all children and families.I-2.6ÑTo acknowledge familiesÕ childrearing values and their right to make decisions for their children. I-2.7ÑTo share information about each childÕs educa -tion and development with families and to help them understand and appreciate the current knowledge base of the early childhood profession. I-2.8ÑTo help family members enhance their under -standing of their children, as staff are enhancing their understanding of each child through communications with families, and support family members in the con -tinuing development of their skills as parents. I-2.9ÑTo foster familiesÕ efforts to build support net -works and, when needed, participate in building networks for families by providing them with oppor -tunities to interact with program staff, other families, community resources, and professional services. PrinciplesP-2.1ÑWe shall not deny family members access to their childÕs classroom or program setting unless access is denied by court order or other legal restriction. P-2.2ÑWe shall inform families of program philosophy, policies, curriculum, assessment system, cultural prac -tices, and personnel qualifications, and explain why we teach as we doÑwhich should be in accordance with our ethical responsibilities to children (see Section I). P-2.3ÑWe shall inform families of and, when appropri -ate, involve them in policy decisions. (See also I-2.3.)P-2.4ÑWe shall ensure that the family is involved in sig -nificant decisions affecting their child. (See also P-1.4.) P-2.5ÑWe shall make every effort to communicate effec -tively with all families in a language that they under-stand. We shall use community resources for transla -tion and interpretation when we do not have sufficient resources in our own programs. P-2.6ÑAs families share information with us about their children and families, we shall ensure that familiesÕ input is an important contribution to the planning and imple -mentation of the program. P-2-7ÑWe shall inform families about the nature and purpose of the programÕs child assessments and how data about their child will be used. P-2.8ÑWe shall treat child assessment information con -fidentially and share this information only when there is a legitimate need for it. P-2.9ÑWe shall inform the family of injuries and inci -dents involving their child, of risks such as exposures to communicable diseases that might result in infec -tion, and of occurrences that might result in emotional stress. P-2.10ÑFamilies shall be fully informed of any proposed research projects involving their children and shall have the opportunity to give or withhold consent without penalty. We shall not permit or participate in research that could in any way hinder the education, development, or well-being of children. P-2.11ÑWe shall not engage in or support exploitation of families. We shall not use our relationship with a family for private advantage or personal gain, or enter into relationships with family members that might im -pair our effectiveness working with their children. P-2.12ÑWe shall develop written policies for the protec -tion of confidentiality and the disclosure of childrenÕs records. These policy documents shall be made avail -able to all program personnel and families. Disclosure of childrenÕs records beyond family members, program personnel, and consultants having an obligation of confidentiality shall require familial consent (except in cases of abuse or neglect).P-2.13ÑWe shall maintain confidentiality and shall re -spect the familyÕs right to privacy, refraining from dis -closure of confidential information and intrusion into family life. However, when we have reason to believe that a childÕs welfare is at risk, it is permissible to share confidential information with agencies, as well as with individuals who have legal responsibility for interven -ing in the childÕs interest. P-2.14ÑIn cases where family members are in conflict with one another, we shall work openly, sharing our observations of the child, to help all parties involved make informed decisions. We shall refrain from becom -ing an advocate for one party. P-2.15ÑWe shall be familiar with and appropriately refer families to community resources and professional sup -port services. After a referral has been made, we shall follow up to ensure that services have been appropri -ately provided. Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

PAGE – 5 ============
5P-3A.3ÑWe shall exercise care in expressing views regarding the personal attributes or professional conduct of co-workers. Statements should be based on firsthand knowledge, not hearsay, and relevant to the interests of children and programs. P-3A.4ÑWe shall not participate in practices that dis -criminate against a co-worker because of sex, race, na-tional origin, religious beliefs or other affiliations, age, marital status/family structure, disability, or sexual orientation. BÑResponsibilities to employers IdealsI-3B.1ÑTo assist the program in providing the highest quality of service. I-3B.2ÑTo do nothing that diminishes the reputation of the program in which we work unless it is violating laws and regulations designed to protect children or is violating the provisions of this Code. PrinciplesP-3B.1ÑWe shall follow all program policies. When we do not agree with program policies, we shall attempt to effect change through constructive action within the organization. P-3B.2ÑWe shall speak or act on behalf of an organiza -tion only when authorized. We shall take care to ac -knowledge when we are speaking for the organization and when we are expressing a personal judgment. P-3B.3ÑWe shall not violate laws or regulations de -signed to protect children and shall take appropriate action consistent with this Code when aware of such violations.P-3B.4ÑIf we have concerns about a colleagueÕs be -havior, and childrenÕs well-being is not at risk, we may address the concern with that individual. If children are at risk or the situation does not improve after it has been brought to the colleagueÕs attention, we shall re -port the colleagueÕs unethical or incompetent behavior to an appropriate authority. P-3B.5ÑWhen we have a concern about circumstances or conditions that impact the quality of care and education within the program, we shall inform the programÕs administration or, when necessary, other appropriate authorities. Section IIIEthical Responsibilities to Colleagues In a caring, cooperative workplace, human dignity is re -spected, professional satisfaction is promoted, and posi -tive relationships are developed and sustained. Based upon our core values, our primary responsibility to colleagues is to establish and maintain settings and rela -tionships that support productive work and meet profes -sional needs. The same ideals that apply to children also apply as we interact with adults in the workplace. (Note: Section III includes responsibilities to co-workers and to employers. See the ÒCode of Ethical Conduct: Supple-ment for Early Childhood Program AdministratorsÓ for responsibilities to personnel ( employees in the original 2005 Code revision), online at files/naeyc/file/positions/PSETH05_supp.pdf.)AÑResponsibilities to co-workers IdealsI-3A.1ÑTo establish and maintain relationships of re -spect, trust, confidentiality, collaboration, and coop -eration with co-workers.I-3A.2ÑTo share resources with co-workers, collaborat -ing to ensure that the best possible early childhood care and education program is provided. I-3A.3ÑTo support co-workers in meeting their profes -sional needs and in their professional development. I-3A.4ÑTo accord co-workers due recognition of profes -sional achievement.Principles P-3A.1ÑWe shall recognize the contributions of col -leagues to our program and not participate in practices that diminish their reputations or impair their effec -tiveness in working with children and families. P-3A.2ÑWhen we have concerns about the professional behavior of a co-worker, we shall first let that person know of our concern in a way that shows respect for personal dignity and for the diversity to be found among staff members, and then attempt to resolve the matter collegially and in a confidential manner. Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

PAGE – 6 ============
6 Section IVEthical Responsibilities to Community and SocietyEarly childhood programs operate within the context of their immediate community made up of families and other institutions concerned with childrenÕs welfare. Our responsibilities to the community are to provide programs that meet the diverse needs of families, to cooperate with agencies and professions that share the responsibility for children, to assist families in gaining access to those agencies and allied professionals, and to assist in the development of community programs that are needed but not currently available. As individuals, we acknowledge our responsibility to provide the best possible programs of care and educa -tion for children and to conduct ourselves with honesty and integrity. Because of our specialized expertise in early childhood development and education and because the larger society shares responsibility for the welfare and protection of young children, we acknowl -edge a collective obligation to advocate for the best interests of children within early childhood programs and in the larger community and to serve as a voice for young children everywhere. The ideals and principles in this section are presented to distinguish between those that pertain to the work of the individual early childhood educator and those that more typically are engaged in collectively on behalf of the best interests of childrenÑwith the understanding that individual early childhood educators have a shared responsibility for addressing the ideals and principles that are identified as Òcollective.Ó Ideal (Individual) 1-4.1ÑTo provide the community with high-quality early childhood care and education programs and services. Ideals (Collective) I-4.2ÑTo promote cooperation among professionals and agencies and interdisciplinary collaboration among professions concerned with addressing issues in the health, education, and well-being of young children, their families, and their early childhood educators.I-4.3ÑTo work through education, research, and advo -cacy toward an environmentally safe world in which all children receive health care, food, and shelter; are nurtured; and live free from violence in their home and their communities.I-4.4ÑTo work through education, research, and ad -vocacy toward a society in which all young children have access to high-quality early care and education programs. I-4.5ÑTo work to ensure that appropriate assessment systems, which include multiple sources of informa -tion, are used for purposes that benefit children. I-4.6ÑTo promote knowledge and understanding of young children and their needs. To work toward greater societal acknowledgment of childrenÕs rights and greater social acceptance of responsibility for the well-being of all children. I-4.7ÑTo support policies and laws that promote the well-being of children and families, and to work to change those that impair their well-being. To partici -pate in developing policies and laws that are needed, and to cooperate with families and other individuals and groups in these efforts. I-4.8ÑTo further the professional development of the field of early childhood care and education and to strengthen its commitment to realizing its core values as reflected in this Code. Principles (Individual)P-4.1ÑWe shall communicate openly and truthfully about the nature and extent of services that we pro -vide.P-4.2ÑWe shall apply for, accept, and work in positions for which we are personally well-suited and profession -ally qualified. We shall not offer services that we do not have the competence, qualifications, or resources to provide. P-4.3ÑWe shall carefully check references and shall not hire or recommend for employment any person whose competence, qualifications, or character makes him or her unsuited for the position.P-4.4ÑWe shall be objective and accurate in report -ing the knowledge upon which we base our program practices.P-4.5ÑWe shall be knowledgeable about the appropri -ate use of assessment strategies and instruments and interpret results accurately to families. Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

PAGE – 8 ============
8Code of Ethics . Defines the core values of the field and provides guidanc e for what professionals should do when they encounter conflicting obligations or responsibilities in their work. Values . Qualities or principles that individuals believe to be desirable or worthwhile and that they prize for themselves, for others, and for the world in which they live. Core Values . Commitments held by a profession that are consciously and knowingly embraced by its practitioners because they make a contribution to society. There is a difference between personal val -ues and the core values of a profession. Morality . PeoplesÕ views of what is good, right, and proper; their beliefs about their obligations; and their ideas about how they should behave. Ethics . The study of right and wrong, or duty and obligation, that involves critical reflection on moral -ity and the ability to make choices between values and the examination of the moral dimensions of relationships. Professional Ethics . The moral commitments of a profession that involve moral reflection that extends and enhances the personal morality practitioners bring to their work, that concern actions of right and wrong in the workplace, and that help individuals re -solve moral dilemmas they encounter in their work. Ethical Responsibilities . Behaviors that one must or must not engage in. Ethical responsibilities are clear-cut and are spelled out in the Code of Ethical Conduct (for example, early childhood educators should never share confidential information about a child or family with a person who has no legitimate need for knowing). Ethical Dilemma . A moral conflict that involves determining appropriate conduct when an indi -vidual faces conflicting professional values and responsibilities. Sources for glossary terms and definitions Feeney, S., & N. Freeman. 2005. Ethics and the early childhood educator: Using the NAEYC code. Washington, DC: NAEYC. Kidder, R.M. 1995. How good people make tough choices: Resolv-ing the dilemmas of ethical living. New York: Fireside. Kipnis, K. 1987. How to discuss professional ethics. Young Chil -dren 42 (4): 26Ð30. Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children The National Association for the Education of Young Chil -acting on behalf of the needs and interests of young children. – purposes. The information contained in the Code is intended to provide early childhood educators with guidelines for work-ing with children from birth through age 8. An individual™s or program™s use, reference to, or review of the Code does not guarantee compliance with NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards and Accreditation Per -recommended that the Code be used as guidance in connec-tion with implementation of the NAEYC Program Standards, but such use is not a substitute for diligent review and appli-cation of the NAEYC Program Standards. NAEYC has taken reasonable measures to develop the Code in a fair, reasonable, open, unbiased, and objective Mary Ambery , Ruth Ann Ball, James Clay, Julie Olsen Edwards, Harriet Egertson, Anthony Fair, Stephanie Feeney, Jana Fleming, Nancy Freeman, Marla Israel, Allison McKinnon, Evelyn Wright Moore, Eva Moravcik, Christina Lopez Morgan, Sarah Mulligan, Nila Rinehart, Betty Holston Smith, and Peter Pizzolongo, NAEYC Staff NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct 2005 Revisions Workgroup research or developments may change the current state members, employees, or agents will be liable for any loss, damage, or claim with respect to any liabilities, including direct, special, indirect, or consequential damages incurred in connection with the Code or reliance on the information presented.

PAGE – 9 ============
9* This Statement of Commitment is not part of the Code but is a personal acknowledgment of the individualÕs willingness to embrace the distinctive values and moral obligations of the field of early childhood care and education. It is recognition of the moral obligations that lead to an individual becoming part of the profession. As an individual who works with young children, I commit myself to furthering the values of early childhood education as they are reflected in the ideals and prin -ciples of the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct. To the best of my ability I will ¥ Never harm children. ¥ Ensure that programs for young children are based on current knowledge and research of child development and early childhood education. ¥ Respect and support families in their task of nurturing children. ¥ Respect colleagues in early childhood care and education and support them in maintaining the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct.¥ Serve as an advocate for children, their families, and their teachers in community and society. ¥ Stay informed of and maintain high standards of professional conduct. ¥ Engage in an ongoing process of self-reflection, realizing that personal characteris -tics, biases, and beliefs have an impact on children and families. ¥ Be open to new ideas and be willing to learn from the suggestions of others. ¥ Continue to learn, grow, and contribute as a professional. ¥ Honor the ideals and principles of the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct. Statement of Commitment*Copyright © 2011 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children

155 KB – 9 Pages