Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Professional Codes I Live By

My Preamble:  I recognize that because I work with the most precious and vulnerable people, I have a moral and ethical obligation to act responsively on their behalf.

All of the "NAEYC Ideals " are meaningful however, if limited to 3 "Ideals" the following are they:

I-1.3- To recognize and respect the unique qualities, abilities and potential of each child.(Retrieved from NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct and Statement  of Commitment, 2005)

I chose this "Ideal" because of my love for children.  The child that cries incessantly because he's missing his mother.  The child who thinks everything belongs to him because it looks like his.  The child  who can't sit still for circle time, lunch or rest time.  They are all special and precious.  It is my obligation to help these children  directly and/or through their teachers to adjust to their environment and know that their "unique qualities, abilities and potential" are accepted and celebrated.

I-1.12- To work with families to provide a safe and smooth transition as children and families move from one program to the next.(Retrieved from NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct and Statement  of Commitment, 2005)

I chose this "Ideal" because, this is a stressful and anxiety producing occurrence for parents to endure.  When parents are comfortable with the care their children are receiving and they are moving into the "unknown" they need reassurance that their child will be alright.  If a child is transitioning from one age group to another, we have the parents visit with the teachers, spend time in the new classroom and ask as many questions as they need to, to feel comfortable with the move.  When their child is moving from our program on to another, we plan a field trip to the new program, for the child and parent, meet the new teachers, have the child meet and eat lunch with his/her new friends, give as much written information about the program to the parents and attempt to have the new teacher come to visit the child at our facility.

I-1.9- To participate in building support networks for families by providing them with opportunities to interact with program staff, other families, community resources and professional services.(Retrieved from NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct and Statement  of Commitment, 2005)

I chose this "Ideal" because it is very important for parents to feel we care.  Parents need to feel connected, in as many ways as possible to the program where their child attends.  Parents are encouraged to volunteer in their child's classroom.  Parenting programs are an essential part of families connecting to families.  They have the opportunity to share their experiences, joys and challenges with each other and may be able to work out or on solutions together.  Our program has a Social Services department that is available to refer families to resources in the community.  We provide services from Legal Aid and a therapy company for parents to access. 

The DEC Code of Ethics also  have "Ideals" that are important to my professional life.
Professional and Interpersonal Behavior
2.  We shall demonstrate the highest standards of personal integrity, truthfulness, and honesty in all our professional activities in order to inspire the trust and confidence of the children and families with whom we work (Retrieved from DEC Code of Ethics, 2009)

I believe that being held accountable for all you do is important.  I am responsible for my actions to and for the people I work with and for the children and families I serve.  Parents have to have a high level of trust in the people who are caring for the most valuable person or little people in their lives.  I must be honest with them when talking to them about their child.  I must also be sensitive to their fears and concerns.  If their child gets hurt, I must be honest when I tell them how it happened or that I didn't see how the injury occurred.  To help staff grow professionally, I must be able to inform them when their behavior is inappropriate and to give them an alternative.  I must do what I say I'm going to do for the children and families so they will have confidence in my word and our program.

4.  We shall support professionals new to the field by mentoring them in the practice of evidence and ethically based services.

I observe and provide technical assistance to my teaching staff.  I schedule training hours to ensure all needed and required ongoing training occurs for teachers.  I document evidence of staff training and performance improvements in the classroom.  I am responsible for training and mentoring each teacher in the implementation of our curriculum.  I ensure that individual professional development plans are developed and implemented for all teaching staff.

7.  We shall be responsible for protecting the confidentiality of the children and families we serve by protecting all forms of verbal, written and electronic communication.

Families must be able to trust that the information they share with me will be held in confidence.  I alleviate the chance that information becoming public by signing an affidavit that holds me accountable to keeping all information confidential.


  1. Stephanie

    I find it really interesting that you pulled the DEC value of implementing high standards along with the NAEYC standard of recognizing each child for their individual potentials. I think all too often we set "standards" for our student and expect them to fit a cookie cutter mold so that we can do "our" lesson plans and follow "our" curriculum without setting standards (or better yet high expectations) of ourselves.
    I have a feeling that you are one of those teachers who does set high ideals for yourself and through that create an environment where the lessons do value each child and allow them to learn within their own strengths.


  2. Stephanie, I agree with you- all the "Ideals" were meaningful to me also. I just love working with children and families, and that's why I chose this profession. It is very rewarding to see children develop new skills and gain an appreciation of learning and I feel that every child deserves a positive educational experience. I will definitely try to implement all these Ideals in with my everyday walk as an Early childhood professional.