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Professional Conduct, Professional Ethics, and Practice Teaching

The Bachelor of Education and Diploma in Education programs promote caring and respect for others as central values in the profession of teaching, and inclusivity as a fundamental pedagogical principle. All teacher candidates in the program are expected to develop and demonstrate the attributes and behaviours of a professional teacher, both during course time at the Faculty of Education and in practicum situations. During the course of their practicum placements (including the alternate practicum and the Concurrent program “experiences in schools”) teacher candidates are accountable for their actions in relation to pupils; parents or guardians; teachers; school and school system officials (including Ministry officials; teachers’ professional organizations; and the general public). While participating in course work and activities on Queen’s campus, teacher candidates are accountable for their actions in relation to faculty, staff and fellow teacher candidates of the Faculty of Education in particular, and faculty staff and students of Queen’s University in general. Teacher candidates who fail to maintain a professional standard in practicum situations may be awarded a failing grade in the practicum regardless of other factors to be considered in the evaluation of practicum performance, and/or may be required to withdraw from the program. While at Queen’s, teacher candidates are further governed by such policies as the Queen’s University Student Code of Conduct, the Computer Code of Ethics and the Harassment/Discrimination Complaint Policy and Procedure; teacher candidates found to have breached University policies may be subject to such disciplinary and/or remedial measures as outlined in the relevant polic(ies).

These attributes and behaviours are also expressed in the following documents:

•    Standards of Practice for the Teaching Profession (Ontario College of Teachers, Foundations of Professional Practice, 2010);
•    Ethical Standards for the Teaching Profession (Ontario College of Teachers, Foundations of Professional Practice, 2010);
•    The Professional Learning Framework for the Teaching Profession (Ontario College of Teachers, Foundations of Professional Practice, 2010);
•    Education Act (Revised Statutes of Ontario, as amended);
•    Regulation 298, Operation of Schools-General (Revised Regulations of Ontario, as amended);
•    Regulation Under the Teaching Profession Act, Sections 13 through 18 (Ontario Teachers' Federation).
•    Regulation 437/97, Professional Misconduct (Ontario College of Teachers).

Specifically:

1.    As future teachers, graduates of the Faculty of Education’s Bachelor of Education and Diploma in Education programs will be responsible for the physical safety, the psychological health and educational well-being of students (children, adolescent or adult) in schools. In Ontario, teacher candidates are associate members of the Ontario Teachers Federation and subject to its standards of professional ethics during their practicum.

2.    The Faculty of Education expects all of its teacher candidates to demonstrate that they have the knowledge, attitudes and capacities needed to be responsible for the educational well-being, physical safety, and psychological health of students (children, adolescent or adult) before they are placed in a school or other practice teaching situation. It further expects that they will at all times demonstrate care, integrity, respect and trust in their interactions with each other, with the representatives of the Faculty of Education and during their practicum with students (children, adolescent or adult), parents, other teachers, principals, other school personnel and  members of the public.

3.    Teacher candidates who do not meet the on-campus academic requirements of Queen’s Faculty of Education may be required to delay the beginning or resumption of a practicum placement. There is no right to begin or resume a practicum placement.

4.    The decision to refuse or delay a practicum must be made by the Associate Dean.  The teacher candidate must be informed in writing of this decision as well as the remedial steps to enable them to complete course requirements.

A teacher candidate’s eligibility to undertake a practicum will be based upon approval by the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies.  Approval will be based upon the following:

•    The Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies will meet with the Practicum Manager within the week prior to each Practicum placement block to determine each teacher candidate’s eligibility to undertake the Practicum.

•    Teacher candidates identified as having incomplete coursework or being in repeated breach of the Faculty of Education attendance requirements will meet with the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies in order to address issues and concerns.

•    Based on the relevant information, the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies will make a decision regarding the teacher candidate’s eligibility to proceed to a practicum placement, or be deferred until all course work requirements are met.

•    In the event of a deferment, when the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies is satisfied that the teacher candidate has met the requirements and completed all incomplete coursework, steps will be taken to arrange a future practicum placement, which may involve an additional administrative fee to be paid by the teacher candidate.

Teacher candidates who fail to maintain a professional standard may be awarded a failing grade in the practicum regardless of other factors to be considered in the evaluation of practicum performance, and/or may be required to withdraw from the program. The Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies (or delegate) makes such decisions after consultation with appropriate persons involved in the case, and after a hearing with the teacher candidate. Teacher candidates may appeal such decisions to the Dean.

Effective 10 October 2013


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