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LIB 620 Library Management 
Fall 2014 
Ethical & Legal Issues 
in School Librarianship 
“It wasn’t me!”
2 
What is Ethics? 
• “What does ethics mean to you?” 
–“Ethics has to do with what my 
feelings tell me is right or wrong.” 
–“Ethics has to do with my religious 
beliefs.” 
–“Being ethical is doing what the law 
requires.” 
–“Ethics consists of the standards of 
behavior our society accepts.” 
–“I don’t know what the word means.” 
• What is Ethics? 
http://www.scu.edu/ethics/practicing/decision/whatisethics. 
html
3 
Definition? 
• Ethics is two things 
– Ethics refers to well based 
standards of right and wrong that 
prescribe what humans ought to 
do, usually in terms of rights, 
obligations, benefits to society, 
fairness, or specific virtues. 
– Ethics refers to the study and 
development of one’s ethical 
standards. 
• What is Ethics?
4 
Teachers’ Ethics 
• Code of Ethics of the Education 
Profession 
– The desire for the respect and 
confidence of one’s colleagues, of 
students, of parents, and of the 
members of the community provides the 
incentive to attain and maintain the 
highest possible degree of ethical 
conduct. The Code of Ethics of the 
Education Profession indicates the 
aspiration of all educators and provides 
standards by which to judge conduct. 
• NEA Code of Ethics, adopted 1975
5 
Kentucky Code of Ethics 
• Professional Code of Ethics for Kentucky 
School Certified Personnel 
– 16 KAR 1:020 
Section 1. Certified personnel in the 
Commonwealth: 
1) Shall strive toward excellence, recognize 
the importance of the pursuit of truth, 
nurture democratic citizenship, and 
safeguard the freedom to learn and to teach; 
(2) Shall believe in the worth and dignity of 
each human being and in educational 
opportunities for all; 
(3) Shall strive to uphold the responsibilities 
of the education profession, including the 
following obligations to students, to parents, 
and to the education profession
6 
Librarians’ Ethics 
• Code of Ethics of the American 
Library Association 
– Ethical dilemmas occur when 
values are in conflict. The 
American Library Association 
Code of Ethics states the values 
to which we are committed, and 
embodies the ethical 
responsibilities of the profession 
in this changing information 
environment.
7 
Main points of ALA code 
• As it applies to the duties of the 
school library media specialist 
(librarian): 
I. Librarians must provide the highest level 
of service through appropriate and 
usefully organized collections, fair and 
equitable circulation ad service policies, 
and skillful, accurate, unbiased, and 
courteous responses to all requests for 
assistance. 
II. Librarians must resist all efforts by 
groups or individuals to censor library 
materials. 
III. Librarians must protect each user’s right 
to privacy with respect to information 
sought or received, and materials 
consulted, borrowed, or acquired.
8 
ALA Code 
IV. Librarians must adhere to the 
principles of due process and 
equality of opportunity in peer 
relationships and personnel actions. 
V. Librarians must distinguish clearly 
in their actions and statements 
between their personal actions and 
statements between their personal 
philosophies and attitudes and those 
of an institution or professional body. 
VI. Librarians must avoid situations in 
which 
personal interests might be served or 
financial benefits gained at the 
expense of library users, colleagues, 
or the employing institution. 
• Code of Ethics
9 
Library Bill of Rights 
• The American Library Association 
affirms that all libraries are forums for 
information and ideas, and that the 
following basic policies should guide 
their services. 
I. Books and other library resources 
should be provided for the interest, 
information, and enlightenment of 
all people of the community the 
library serves. Materials should not 
be excluded because of the origin, 
background, or views of those 
contributing to their creation.
10 
Library Bill of Rights 
II. Libraries should provide materials 
and information presenting all 
points of view on current and 
historical issues. Materials should 
not be proscribed or removed 
because of partisan or doctrinal 
disapproval. 
III. Libraries should challenge 
censorship in the fulfillment of their 
responsibility to provide 
information and enlightenment. 
IV. Libraries should cooperate with all 
persons and groups concerned with 
resisting abridgment of free 
expression and free access to ideas.
11 
Library Bill of Rights 
V. A person’s right to use a library 
should not be denied or abridged 
because of origin, age, 
background, or views. 
VI. Libraries which make exhibit 
spaces and meeting rooms 
available to the public they serve 
should make such facilities 
available on an equitable basis, 
regardless of the beliefs or 
affiliations of individuals or 
groups requesting their use.
12 
Ethics in practice 1 
Jacobson, F. and Smith, G. (1998, 
March). Teaching virtue in a virtual 
world: Internet ethics for students. 
School Library Journal, 44, issue 3. 
Accessible through Canvas
13 
Ethics in practice 2 
• Should parents be able to prohibit their 
kids from reading school library books?
14 
Ethics in practice 3
15 
Ethics in practice 4 
• PLAGIARISM @ Your School Library 
– The librarian stands to build political 
capital and influence for the library if he or 
she understands the problem of plagiarism 
and offers solutions to the faculty. The 
library’s Web page should have links to 
correct methods of electronic citation as 
well as links to student information about 
identifying plagiarism in all its forms. . . . 
The librarian should have lessons planned 
to teach information literacy and the 
hazards of infringing on copyright and 
intellectual property. 
• Harry Willems, Library Media Connection 
(February 2002)
Plagiarism video modeled after identity theft videos - Click 
here to view in High Quality. 
16 
http://youtu.be/gC2ew6qLa8U
17
18 
Using Google to check for plagiarism 
– Running a Google search is one of the easiest 
and convenient ways to detect online 
plagiarism. You simply type in a phrase and 
the search engine checks its large database for 
potential copies of your plagiarized writing. It 
will even check Word files, Portable Document 
Format files (PDFs), and pages that haven’t 
been HTML formatted. 
– Another boon is that Google updates in near 
real time, making it great for tracking down 
copies of just-written content. Oh, and it’s 
100% free. When using Google as your piracy 
sniffer, be sure to search statistically 
improbable phrases, first in quotes and then 
without. Do not run searches on headlines, as 
plagiarists normally change those. 
7 Ways to Check Your Fresh Content for Plagiarism
19 
Top Online Plagiarism Checkers 
– Protect Your Content 
October 27, 2008 By Ann Smarty 
http://www.searchenginejournal.com/top-online- 
plagiarism-checkers-protect-your-content/ 
7931/
20
http://copyright101.byu.edu/module1/page4.htm 
21
22
23 
A central copyright website 
http://copyright.gov/
24
25
26
27

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Ethical and Legal Issues in School Librarianship

  • 1. LIB 620 Library Management Fall 2014 Ethical & Legal Issues in School Librarianship “It wasn’t me!”
  • 2. 2 What is Ethics? • “What does ethics mean to you?” –“Ethics has to do with what my feelings tell me is right or wrong.” –“Ethics has to do with my religious beliefs.” –“Being ethical is doing what the law requires.” –“Ethics consists of the standards of behavior our society accepts.” –“I don’t know what the word means.” • What is Ethics? http://www.scu.edu/ethics/practicing/decision/whatisethics. html
  • 3. 3 Definition? • Ethics is two things – Ethics refers to well based standards of right and wrong that prescribe what humans ought to do, usually in terms of rights, obligations, benefits to society, fairness, or specific virtues. – Ethics refers to the study and development of one’s ethical standards. • What is Ethics?
  • 4. 4 Teachers’ Ethics • Code of Ethics of the Education Profession – The desire for the respect and confidence of one’s colleagues, of students, of parents, and of the members of the community provides the incentive to attain and maintain the highest possible degree of ethical conduct. The Code of Ethics of the Education Profession indicates the aspiration of all educators and provides standards by which to judge conduct. • NEA Code of Ethics, adopted 1975
  • 5. 5 Kentucky Code of Ethics • Professional Code of Ethics for Kentucky School Certified Personnel – 16 KAR 1:020 Section 1. Certified personnel in the Commonwealth: 1) Shall strive toward excellence, recognize the importance of the pursuit of truth, nurture democratic citizenship, and safeguard the freedom to learn and to teach; (2) Shall believe in the worth and dignity of each human being and in educational opportunities for all; (3) Shall strive to uphold the responsibilities of the education profession, including the following obligations to students, to parents, and to the education profession
  • 6. 6 Librarians’ Ethics • Code of Ethics of the American Library Association – Ethical dilemmas occur when values are in conflict. The American Library Association Code of Ethics states the values to which we are committed, and embodies the ethical responsibilities of the profession in this changing information environment.
  • 7. 7 Main points of ALA code • As it applies to the duties of the school library media specialist (librarian): I. Librarians must provide the highest level of service through appropriate and usefully organized collections, fair and equitable circulation ad service policies, and skillful, accurate, unbiased, and courteous responses to all requests for assistance. II. Librarians must resist all efforts by groups or individuals to censor library materials. III. Librarians must protect each user’s right to privacy with respect to information sought or received, and materials consulted, borrowed, or acquired.
  • 8. 8 ALA Code IV. Librarians must adhere to the principles of due process and equality of opportunity in peer relationships and personnel actions. V. Librarians must distinguish clearly in their actions and statements between their personal actions and statements between their personal philosophies and attitudes and those of an institution or professional body. VI. Librarians must avoid situations in which personal interests might be served or financial benefits gained at the expense of library users, colleagues, or the employing institution. • Code of Ethics
  • 9. 9 Library Bill of Rights • The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services. I. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  • 10. 10 Library Bill of Rights II. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval. III. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment. IV. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  • 11. 11 Library Bill of Rights V. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views. VI. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
  • 12. 12 Ethics in practice 1 Jacobson, F. and Smith, G. (1998, March). Teaching virtue in a virtual world: Internet ethics for students. School Library Journal, 44, issue 3. Accessible through Canvas
  • 13. 13 Ethics in practice 2 • Should parents be able to prohibit their kids from reading school library books?
  • 14. 14 Ethics in practice 3
  • 15. 15 Ethics in practice 4 • PLAGIARISM @ Your School Library – The librarian stands to build political capital and influence for the library if he or she understands the problem of plagiarism and offers solutions to the faculty. The library’s Web page should have links to correct methods of electronic citation as well as links to student information about identifying plagiarism in all its forms. . . . The librarian should have lessons planned to teach information literacy and the hazards of infringing on copyright and intellectual property. • Harry Willems, Library Media Connection (February 2002)
  • 16. Plagiarism video modeled after identity theft videos - Click here to view in High Quality. 16 http://youtu.be/gC2ew6qLa8U
  • 17. 17
  • 18. 18 Using Google to check for plagiarism – Running a Google search is one of the easiest and convenient ways to detect online plagiarism. You simply type in a phrase and the search engine checks its large database for potential copies of your plagiarized writing. It will even check Word files, Portable Document Format files (PDFs), and pages that haven’t been HTML formatted. – Another boon is that Google updates in near real time, making it great for tracking down copies of just-written content. Oh, and it’s 100% free. When using Google as your piracy sniffer, be sure to search statistically improbable phrases, first in quotes and then without. Do not run searches on headlines, as plagiarists normally change those. 7 Ways to Check Your Fresh Content for Plagiarism
  • 19. 19 Top Online Plagiarism Checkers – Protect Your Content October 27, 2008 By Ann Smarty http://www.searchenginejournal.com/top-online- plagiarism-checkers-protect-your-content/ 7931/
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  • 23. 23 A central copyright website http://copyright.gov/
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