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Is It Ethical to Say Yes? Essay Example

Pages: 2

Words: 566

Essay

The initial reaction to such a dilemma seems to be nothing more than attempt to best balance the responsibilities and rights of both the educator and the family. Since the best outcome is achieved through the cooperation of both, the lines between those two settings- and their respective responsibilities and rights- easily blur. However, teachers cannot hold themselves responsible for students’ home lives. It is not unethical to say no to this parent’s plea. Is it ethical to say yes?

Three primary problems exist with this proposal. First, if the student, Timothy, is awake during that hour each day, he will need to be occupied in a safe manner which does not disturb other students or interfere with that quiet time which teachers typically use to plan their lessons. Second, interfering with Timothy’s satisfactory sleep schedule while at school could impact his attitude toward school and his ability to realize the most learning during this time. Third, this proposal shifts Frances’s responsibility to include sleep patterns and puts the parent’s potential benefits above those of Timothy.

Before proposing a plan, it is necessary to ensure that certain foods, allergies, sibling noise, outdoor noise, caffeine, or Timothy’s favorite shows are not keeping him awake. Children and adults alike commonly stay awake longer in anticipation of their favorite shows. (Someone watches The Late Late Show, and two lates are in its very name.) Some children respond positively to lavender scents at bath time or to a cool down period prior to laying down, such as singing lullabies or other soothing songs, reading, reviewing the day’s work, etc. This is also a good opportunity for mother and son to share knowledge of their day and bond. As the initial step, it is advisable to state that these steps are among the most commonly utilized for parents facing similar situations. Timothy’s mother will most likely indicate with a nod or “I’ve already tried that”, and Frances avoids asking questions which could be perceived as invasive. If additional physical activity (20 minutes) would aid Timothy and not impair his studies, this is another alternative option- if the time and staff are available to facilitate this change.

If the parent persists, then Frances may opt to meet with the mother and inform her that Timothy will be encouraged to pick a puzzle, read a book, or do other quiet activities during the first half hour of nap time. All such changes are implemented and upheld at the discretion of the staff. Timothy, as the student, is priority one. Teachers may choose to accommodate parents when they can, but it is optional and the teacher is still ultimately responsible for Timothy and his classmates. I have been in similar situations both to Timothy’s mother and Timothy’s teacher. On the side of Timothy’s mother, a balanced schedule and home life allows her to attend to the intimate social needs particular to the positive mother-child relationship. On the side of Timothy’s teacher, the change in schedule is a last resort and could involve extra work and more inconveniences. Both perspectives share that stress and job performance are on the line. The primary difference is that a parent has a greater freedom to implement their own changes in a student’s schedule and that a teacher is responsible for a greater number of students for approximately the same number of hours that Timothy is at home during the school year.

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