Accountability is a new addition to the vocabulary of public education. It is used by school administrators, teacher institutions, classroom teachers, and the public general. It is often quoted by parents and other people who have some business or something to do with teaching.
Accountability on the part of the classroom teacher is very important. It is a measure of the teacher’s dedication to his job. Is he doing the job that he should do ? Is he doing the job commensurate to higher rates of pay and compensation he is asking for now. The public wants to know the government is using the money efficiently for public education. Parents think that if the school are going to ask for more funds and levy more taxes for the support of education the schools should show government funds are used to the best for public education.
If we put a grade five book in the hands of an 11 years old child and ask him to read the book, and then the child can read the book, then someone should be held accountable for the child. Who is accountable for the child ? Is it the teacher or the parents ?
We have to face reality. What is the main responsibility of the teacher to the children who are placed in his hands ? It is time that teacher attention should be called to his accountability to his pupils.
How accountable is the classroom teacher ? Should he be held responsible for what the pupil does or doesn’t learn singly or along with others in and out of the school ?
What are classroom teachers accountable for ? The Code of Ethics of the Education Profession subscribed to by 999, 000 members of the National Education Association says, that teachers are accountable for;
- Adequate academic preparation
- Continued professional growth
- Enhancement of the professional knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for competent classroom practice
- Knowledge of and concern for his pupils
- Communication and relations with students, staff, community, and the education profession
- Involvement in educational and social concerns
- Active participation in community affairs
- Ethical conduct
- Membership in and support of the teaching profession.
Classroom teachers as members of the teaching profession are accountable for the development and implement action within the school system of policies that will insure.
- Preparation of the child as a worthy members of the community. This includes the development of the academic, vocation, physical and social skills of the child; a sense of worth; an appreciation of the culture of the Filipino people; and an understanding of an ever-changing world.
- Establishment of rapport with the child and maximum learning opportunity for him. This includes
- The development of a curriculum that meets his needs
- Conditions conductive to a learning environment
- Definite learning objectives
- A reasonable evaluation of the child’s learning and abilities
- Classroom management and organization that stimulates learning
- Adequate and appropriate physical resources and equipment
Classroom teachers as members of the teaching professions are accountable for the observance of the ethics of the profession.
They are accountable
- To themselves
- To the teaching profession
- To their co-teachers
- To their students or pupils
- To the public or the parents
- To the school administration
- To college personnel
Classroom teachers should have or share in the responsibility for education only when the following conditions are met;
- The public supports education in a measure commensurate with its expectations of education. Quality education requires funding schools adequately, paying teacher salaries commensurate with the rising cost of living, and allocation comparable resources to the education of every child.
- The school setting is conductive to teaching and learning with the following conditions:
- Teachers take part in the preparation of realistic, clearly defined goals set for the school by the administration, parents and community along academic, vocational, attitudinal, humanistic, and behavioral ends.
- The school climate protects the rights of students and teachers.
- Students participate in educational decision making, particularly to the curriculum.
- The teacher is assigned only to a position that he is prepared to teach.
- The teacher has time to plan, prepare and execute the teaching task and is free from extra-curricular non-teaching duties.
- The teacher has an appropriate class load.
- The teacher has adequate facilities, space, resources and teaching materials.
- The teacher is given a share in the responsibility and resources to select, evaluate, and purchase materials necessary to implement the curriculum.
- The teacher has freedom to teach without fear of reprisal.
- The teacher has a strong administrative backing on discipline.
- The teacher is given a share in the right to determine evaluation procedures.
- The testing program is relevant, impartial, and non-discriminatory.
- The teacher has the right to diagnose the needs of students and refer them to coordinating professional services.
Ariel D. Cañete
Abucay District ALS Coordinator
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