Creating an ethical school climate in a higher education institution might be challenging, but it’s essential. It is crucial because your reputation as a higher institution education may suffer when there is a lack of ethical climate. Moreover, your students and staff may suffer when the climate isn’t moral.
What is an ethical climate?
So, creating an ethical school climate is not always easy because it does not depend only on people who manage or attend a college or a university. Colleges and universities worldwide have a lot of students and staff working and contributing to the institution’s culture.
So, the factors that may be there might be some students or even staff members are not behaving ethically. It takes work to point out unethical behaviour among the staff members and students, especially when this behaviour is born out of the lessons.
For example, there might be some groups of students who retain themselves as more popular and might bully others they believe are not popular enough, so that bullying may occur in higher education institutions. That is why schools, colleges, and universities worldwide should use a powerful tool at their hands: supervising and mentoring.
Mentoring can help students choose their study path, improve their careers, and even choose a job. There may even be work trials during their studies. But mentoring can also help students to feel more confident because students can tell them what is happening outside the lessons.
If there are any episodes of unmoral behaviour, they can also refer it to the mentor. Of course, creating a positive and ethical climate in a higher education institution is not easy because in most cases parents are indirectly involved in their youngsters’ lives.
With children, it may be easier because you may directly contact the parents and tell them to keep an eye on their children’s behaviour; besides that, you may try to educate the child who is a bully.
But how can you educate young adults who are bullies or even a group of young adults who are exercising bullying other students?
That is why mentoring is helpful. Mentors can help the victims, but they can also help bullies to be better, and if they can’t, they can maybe help them find a psychologist or another specialist who could help them in a more professional way.
Of course, mentors are required to study psychology. Still, it can be challenging for them to take care of the people’s conduct since they are also concerned with other college or university-related issues.
However, there might be some cases that need more strict supervision and more professional advice, so therefore mentors’ networks with psychologists come in handy.
If mentors can’t handle the situation alone, they can assist students by giving them references to go and see a professional.
The same goes for educators and university staff. There might be all supporting between educators and students. Educators must accept diversity in educational practice and adopt inclusive practices in their lessons and lectures. Also educators have a significant role in making a higher education institution more ethical and creating a better climate for everyone. Educators have to respect the civil rights of all of their students.
They do not have to discriminate against their learners or colleagues based on national or ethnic origin, race, religion, culture, sexual orientation, marital status, political beliefs, age, socioeconomic status, vocational interest or disabling condition.
Educators must address this behaviour whenever they see an episode of injustice or discrimination. Educators must use methodologies and tools for effective teaching and learning, including diversity in educational practice.
Moreover, educators and staff must impart their students’ principles of societal responsibility, discrimination, good citizenship, and inclusivity. Educators, as well as the college or university staff, have to use professional language and communication skills.
They must communicate to students, their colleagues and parents with an assertive communication that reflects sensitivity and that respects fundamental human rights of care, privacy and dignity.
The educators and staff must keep confidence in the information they obtain from their colleagues or students. They only have to use this information for personal necessity but for the overall good if required by law.
In other words.
Educators and university staff must be open-minded and use appropriate judgement related to the context, not judge situations or people from a personal point of view. They must not harm the learning or setting environment of the students, and they have to give the students the best conditions for the health and safety of everyone.
ACS ASOMI College of Sciences offers mentoring services to its students; click here to find out more.