Ethic of Care Conversation
EDU 689 Personal Ethics & Leadership Capacity
For the Ethic of Care Conversation, I spoke to two individuals from my school who I felt would give me the broadest view possible. One who serves as the Dean of the school which is comparable to the assistant principal. The other person serves as the discipline lead for students with challenges. The first individual I will call Tom he is the dean and has been doing such a job for 5 years. He is prior military which will lend his conversation close to the values and attributes of the military. I selected him due to his everyday interaction with teachers and students and in his role, he has a great influence on the daily workings of the school.
The second person I shall call Sue she has the job of instilling discipline and ensuring the matters of discipline are taken care of. She also has roots in the military and has been working in the educational field for three years. I chose to talk to Sue because of her extensive background with working with adults that now transpires to working with teenagers. She also has a great influence in the community with some activities she does after school.
In talking to Tom, it was interesting to have to put the ethic of care into perspective for him. Even though he has done this job for two years and another for three he did not know he was putting ethic of care to work. This seemed true for both parties involved in the conversation. Once I explained what ethic of care was, they both quickly said I do that every day. With both parties being military in the past it was an easy transformation into education and to carry over strong ethics. In the past, educational leaders were trained using military and business models. This meant that they were taught about the importance of the hierarchy and the need to follow those at the top, and, at the same time, to be in command and in charge of subordinates .
Sue also understood the ethic of care once I explained what it was. The interesting thing is she related it to her time in the military and stated that it was a way of life as a leader. To this day she does the same with the students she has to see for discipline problems. Sue also mentioned that she deals with a lot of emotions from the students with them being teenagers. One aspect of its intricacy is that this lens tends to sometimes deal with emotions . Sue also stated that using ethic of care helps build the relationships needed to help other students and with the strong emotions in school it lend itself to become personable to help these students.
Both Tom and Sue stated that the most important thing they have noticed is the students just need someone to listen to them to solve their problems with them. The carer is open to what the cared-for is saying and might be experiencing and is able to reflect upon it . With that they both feel that the students benefit from seeing a leader who cares and actually takes the time to listen and help the students maneuver their feelings and problems leading to the student solving the problems at hand.
Overall the Tom and Sue expressed that the military training in ethics and morals still hold strong and they both do their best to share the experiences with other leaders and teachers. Which helps build a team who is capable of being a person who understands the ethic of care and can effectively operate within the moral boundaries to help students and show they care.
EI– Professional Practice
For me the concept of emotional intelligence is new but the theory in emotional intelligence is something I have also done for a long time. Being a leader in the Army I had to connect with people in a way to show I care. As a teacher it is essential to connect with the students and emotional intelligence helps. I continue to this day to try and connect with some students and it all encompasses with just listening to what they have to say. I also use positive responses to ensure students who are frustrated will find comfort in the situation or frustration being elevated.
I also feel emotional intelligence is comparable to restorative justice and to have the ability to calm situations down. It also has the effect of helping students to listen to them and restorative justice helps with the hard questions and helps the students feel safe. Restorative Practices in Schools is philosophically based in fostering relationships, strengthening understanding, repairing harm, and building strong communities .
EI – Personal Characteristics
Emotional Intelligence for me is all about making connections and being able to calm and control a situation that might get out of hand. If a teacher or administrator can have the ability to foresee an issue the care and concern can come early and help alleviate the issues. When I was thinking about this, I remember a time when I dint have any emotional Intelligence skills or I just didn’t want to use them. It was during a deployment and instead of slowing down a situation and showing there’s more to this than what we see. I feel I could have stopped a bad situation with a soldier I had in my company when I was a first sergeant. I will never forget the situation and ever since I always found a way to pause the situations, I have delt with and have not reacted without thinking and caring for the other person. .
From the conversations I had with the two leaders and my personal reflections I believe I can improve my emotional intelligence and become a better leader and person. I sincerely feel that it takes effort to be a leader who shows the ethics of care and have the emotional intelligence to follow through with caring and understanding others. Whether it is a student or a fellow teacher everyone can help with any situation by pausing the thinking about the relationships and how to react to the situation. The ultimate goal is to facilitate the situation to where everyone involved has come to a solution together that makes everyone comfortable.