Educational Ethics Critic Of Young V

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Educational Ethics Critic Of Young V

  1. 1. Educational Ethics Critic of Young v. Bella <br />After reading the Young v. Bella case as an educator, I had a lot of thoughts on how the University and its employees had wronged Wanda Young. Young was a distance education student at the University and had submitted a term paper that had raised red flags with her professor. The issue at hand was that Professor Bella speculated that Young was writing in first person and confessing to being to the sexual abuse of children.<br />This charge, being very serious, was never brought to the attention of Young. By reading through this case it, was clear to me that when this allegation got passed from Professor to Department Chair to Director of the Social Work School in which Young was trying to apply; that the duty of care owed to her was never given. A civil wrong doing such as this owed duty of care not being given leaves the institution open for a tort claim. “Two classic torts that most frequently arise in the setting of postsecondary education are negligence and defamation.” (Kaplin & Lee, 2006 p. 87). In this case Young could clearly claim defamation. <br />There were some many break downs in the way this issue was handled by the university employees. Ideally, if a professor has a question whether a paper is a confession a crime, I think ethically they owe it to the student to discuss the matter with them before reporting to a superior or another agency. Also, in the case the professor also suspected Young of plagiarism and even threatened to check all of the sources sited to prove this charge. Since the textbook from which the section about child abuse, and that which raise the red flag, was listed in the bibliography; had the professor done this they may have seen that the appendix was not a first person account. <br />Even after Young cleared herself of plagiarism and Professor Bella was told by her superior and the Child Protection Service to contact Young directly and address the concern - she did not. If Professor Bella was so torn about this uncomfortable situation and really wanting to get to the bottom of it, why did she not take the advice of her superiors and the agency in which she went to for clarification on how to proceed? To me, this was the biggest mistake made in the case. Had Professor Bella done what she had been instructed to do, Young could have cleared her name, eased Professor Bella’s mind, and it could have all been over with before a wrong and very serious allegation was spread through the tight knit Social Work School and community in which Young was a part.<br />As educators of any age group it is our duty to report suspected abuse, as it should be any citizen. However, educators also owe it to their students with whom they are in contact with, whether it be face to face or online, to confer with them and let them be aware of what is thought and happening concerning themselves. <br />When the Chair of the School’s Admission Committee, Professor Jane Dempster, met with Young and was not straight with her but instead decided to tell her, (according to Young) “the faculty did not think she had what it took to be a social worker and that she should look elsewhere for a career “(Young v. Bella, 1 S.C.R. 108, 2006 p.12) it was again a breakdown in the communicated and owed duty and standard of care the educators owed Wanda young. Another breakdown in the owed duty of care came from Professor Rowe, also a defendant in the case. When Professor Bella brought the excerpt in question from Young’s paper to Professor Rowe, the paper in its entirety was never seen. Rowe owed it to Young to read the excerpt in the context in which she submitted it. Had that been done, possible another point of view other than Professor Bella’s may have been seen on why the excerpt was a part of the term paper.<br />For me, the bottom line is that if anyone had been truthful and told Wanda young about what their suspensions of her were, then Young could have cleared herself immediately. Had they been forthcoming with her, and she would have been actually guilty of child abuse the fact that the college and professors had divulged their suspensions and their plan for future actions against her would not have changed an outcome. She would have been prosecuted by child Protective Services nonetheless. Young, unaware of the allegations limited her to defend herself and did not afford her to clear her name and have the owed duty of care she was entitled.<br /> <br />

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