1. There are many codes of practice, legislation and regulation which a teacher must be aware of and adhere to. It is our responsibility as trainee teachers to comply and fulfil all our legal obligations under the equality legislation and associated codes of practice. Teachers should observe and be in accordance with The Institute for Learning’s code of Professional Practice (ifl.ac.uk) that came into law on 1 April 2008. “The code was developed by the profession for the profession and it outlines the behaviours expected of members – for the benefit of learners, employers, the profession and the wider community.” (ifl.ac.uk). Teachers within the lifelong sector should comply with the code. The code is made up of seven behaviours, professional integrity, respect, reasonable care, professional practice, criminal offence disclosure, responsibility during institute investigations and responsibility (ifl.ac.uk)
Key legislations (legislation.gov.uk) include but not limited to:
The Data Protection Act (2003)
Trainee teachers are often given access to confidential and sensitive information and data to assist in their teaching and professional development. As a trainee teacher, one needs to be careful of divulging sensitive and storing personal information of the students. Trainee teacher should never share personal details of the students with others.
The Children's Act 2004
This has had a huge impact on the way schools perform on issues of care welfare and discipline. It is required that agencies such as Social services and Education work together to ensure pupil welfare. The sharing of information ensures that children receive the best possible care. Every child has the right to be healthy, stay safe, enjoy & achieve, make a positive contribution and achieve economic wellbeing (every child matters 2003). The teacher should be vigilant and be conscious of the problems that affects the child at home and in school. Equality Act (2010)
As a trainee teacher, we should be committed to valuing diversity and promoting equality for everyone. We do this by adhering to all equal opportunities legislation and ensuring that we are fair, objective, transparent and free from discrimination in all of our systems, processes, procedures, activities and decisions. Equality of opportunity means that all children have the opportunity to achieve the best possible development, regardless of their gender, ability, race, ethnicity, circumstances or age. Some vulnerable children may have been particularly disadvantaged in their access to important opportunities and their health and educational needs will require particular attention in order to optimise their current welfare as well as their long term outcomes.
Disability Discrimination Act 2005
This act gives disabled people the right to employment and education. Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, disabled people have the legal right to fair treatment in employment, in education and as customers of service. Subsequent amendment of this act in 2005 created a duty on public bodies to actively promote disability equality from December 2006 as well as closing some of the loopholes in the previous Act.
Trainee teachers need to ensure that their classroom is compliant in terms of accessibility and operation. We must ensure that any activities set are suitable for all learners to participate and must not make any learner feel excluded by their disability.
Health and Safety at Work Act (1974)
The trainee teacher should be responsible for the safety and the welfare of the students as well as their own. We should be aware and identify hazards, assess consequent risk and take steps to control the risks to themselves and others i.e. we should always make the class aware of the nearest fire exits and