The education profession requires one to be dedicated and to love your job since it involves people’s lives, young lives and it has many implications connected to it. Sexual misconduct is one of those implications and it is totally unaccepted. If a professional teacher or the principal engages in sexual activities with leaners or employees of the school they are employed in they will have to be dismissed according to section 17(1) (a and b) of the Employment of Educators Act, 76 of 2000. (Rossouw J 2016) Sexual misconduct is a serious offence and it has to be dealt with in an appropriate manner and assertively. Sexual misconduct can be can be done by a person of any gender and it can occur between people of the same or different genders. It refers to any form of conduct that is committed without consent, or by threatening or intimidating the victim. Existentialism and the African philosophy are the two philosophical perspective that I think might assist in helping to solve this current burning issue. Existentialism is a philosophical aspect that questions the meaning of life whereas the African philosophy is the solution to the challenges that Africa is facing. Sexual misconduct I schools should be addressed in a broad manner since it damages the lives of the future generation. How can a child learn when he or she is being taught by a person whom assaulted her sexually, whom violated their right to privacy? It has many effects on the lives of the victims since they have to face their abuser each and every day. This might lead to murder or suicide, high dropout rates which will later result in unwanted pregnancy, poverty, high increase in people living with HIV and many more including prostituting since this young girls will feel unwanted and useless.
In this assay I will argue from a positive perspective that existentialism and the African can assist us in determining what it to be understood as ethical teaching practice. This essay might help young people out there whom are being victimized in schools to come out and seek help. It will also remind teachers of the commitment they took when they entered the teaching practice.
Sexual misconduct in schools and the minister’s remarks regarding the principal of Reiger Park High School in Boksburg, whom resigned following accusations of sexual misconduct involving leaners.
Teachers who engages in sexual activities are a bad example to our children, they are abusing their powers for their own gain. This kind of behavior is totally unaccepted in the education profession. Teachers should strive to build the nation not to destroy it. Young girls whom find
themselves in this situations are afraid to come out, since they are aware that teachers will avenge themselves when it comes to their progress. Fellow teachers and leaners can notice that something is going on when the teacher is constantly complementing a particular leaner. That is when they should take safety measures as to include other deserving members to help them put an end to this issue. Other signs include spending more time with a particular leaner alone in the classroom or outside the classroom.
How can existentialism help us understand ethical teaching practices?
Ethics can be viewed as a philosophy of morality as it deals with the right and wrongs ( Mahony P 2009). Teachers are supposed to be the role models of this leaners. They need to conduct themselves in a way that they know will send a positive message to this leaners. Existentialists regards a learner as a thing that needs to be cultivated according to a pre supposed idea of what they should become (Thomas W 1987). Teachers are the cultivators. Leaners learn better in a classroom atmosphere that is conducive to learning and teachers need to make sure that they produce that kind of atmosphere. When teachers are trained they are made aware of the ways in which they should conduct themselves. Education law prepares the teacher for ethical teaching practices since it points out all the codes of conduct that are connected with teaching. It stipulates the way in which teachers should handle certain circumstances and also how they can deal with certain issues. Existentialism helps us to trust our instincts, this connects with the ways in which leaners will behave but then the educator can prevent being dismissed by following the certain necessary procedures. Teachers should refrain from sexual relationships with leaners since it is violating the code of professional ethics.
South Africa is in danger because of the foundation laid by teachers, it is not concrete. This is a result of the actions of some of the educators who only got into the teaching practice for money and also because it was the only course they were qualified for. Africans are not uniting, they do not practice the spirit of Ubuntu. The ethics of the teacher is intact with the morality of teachers in school and breaking those ethics leads to many disruptive consequences not only in schools but also in the community since teachers are community builders. The African philosophy consists of religious and moral beliefs of African people. When teachers work accordingly and conduct themselves they are building the African nation. This philosophy can help us encourage both parties in the education system to have morals. Teachers who do not conduct themselves
according to the south African code of conduct are not helping us in promoting humble human beings because they are misusing their powers in a an appropriate manner.
Furthermore, it is not all educators whom do not have a passion or a calling for teaching, some are dedicated in their work and they are producing very intelligent leaders. Sexual misconduct can be prevented if girls spoke up before things get out of control. I think there should be a social worker at schools who should assist in such matters, because leaners will not speak freely about a certain teacher in one of his/ her colleques. The impact of sexual misconduct is devastating for survivors, but also affects those close to them, as well as the surrounding community. It is the root cause of many social and health issues and touches all of us in one way or another. That is why communities need to unite and help to avoid this kinds of issues, if one teacher is punished harshly for this behavior, none of the educators will want to follow in their footsteps.