Ethics: fundamental principles; “For thepurposes of this chapter, the term „ethics‟ isused to signify a specific category of values –those that are trans-rational in nature,usually normatively grounded in a particularcultural context and take the form ofstatements of basic principle expressed inabstract and context-stripped forms” (Bushet al., 2010, p. 36).
Shapiro and Stekovich‟s (2005) multi-ethical analytical approach to the interpretation of ethical dilemmas as a paradigm for use in order to ensure that educational leaders make more sound ethical decisions. "The key ethical orientations suggested by these scholars include the ethic of justice, the ethic of critique, the ethic of care and a hybrid multi-dimensional model, the ethic of profession” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 39).
o Critique: § “justified in order to name and understand as much as possible the alternate perspectives applicable to a situation, especially those of minorities and individuals otherwise without voice or representation” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 39).
o Care: § “keep[s] the focus of the process on people and their best interests” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 39). § “one can assess the capacity and responsibility of stakeholders to a situation in a humane way” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 39).
o Justice: § “can be applied as a basis for deciding on actions that will maximise benefits for all while respecting the rights of individuals” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 40).
Although Begley acknowledges that “the sequencing andapplication of ethical perspectives needs to be very fluidand dynamic" (Bush et al., 2010, p. 40), he argues that“there is a professionally appropriate sequence for theapplication of these ethical lenses in a school leadershipsituation” (Bush et al., 2010, p. 39); critique and careare used first to intentionally and purposefully interpretand assess the situation within the parameters of actingwith justice, as it informs the decision-maker so that anappropriate, effective decision can be made and enacted.
· Context has a key role when engaging in the ethical decision- making process.· Critical thinking is a key component for successful ethical decision-making to occur, including capacity to discriminate actual intentions within ourselves and among others” (Bush et al, 2010, p. 47).· Dialogue is an essential component to include in making ethical decisions.· Decisions may create a precedent for how dilemmas, conflicts, and crises are dealt with in the future.· Decisions may not reflect existing precedents; transparency as to why this is so is encouraged.· Tension exists between best interests of stakeholders: individual vs. group vs. entire student body or community as a whole.
1. We will present you with a scenario from professional practice.2. As a small group, reflect on the issue using the framework presented to you on the handout. (10 minutes) Pass your handout on to another group -- clockwise3. Review the new scenario and solution given to the dilemma. Now evaluate and provide your responses to the solution.
Please present the second scenario, solution and your groups evaluation. Please share your constructive feedback.As the groups are presenting take a moment for your own self-reflection.*We have provided you with a copy of all of the scenario as well as a new framework for your personal reflections.
Guiding Principles to consider when making your decisions.1. Your decision may create precedent or not reflect existing precedent.2. Tension between best interests of individual vs group vs entire student body or community as a whole.
ReferencesBegley, Paul T. (2010). Leading with moral purpose: The place of ethics. In T. Bush, L. Bell, & D. Middlewood (Eds.), The principles of educational leadership & management (pp. 31-54). Los Angeles: Sage.Cranston, N., Ehrich, L., Kimber, M. (2004). "Right" versus "wrong" and "right" versus "right": Understanding ethical dilemmas faced by educational leaders. Prepared for the Australian Association for Research in Education Conference. 28th November - 2nd December, Melbourne, Australia - Faculty; Queensland University of TechnologyOntario College of Teachers. (2006). Exploring ethical knowledge through inquiry. Retrieved from www.oct.caTroy, Brenda, "Elementary school assistant principals decision making analyzed through fourethical frameworks of justice, critique, care, and the profession" (2009). Graduate School Thesesand Dissertations. Paper 55. http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/etd/55. (University of South Florida)