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ERIC Number: ED478388
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Jun
Pages: 14
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
"But, It Was on My Own Time!" Professional Consequences of Off-Duty Behavior.
Weldon, Jeffery A.
This paper explores how states have addressed the issue of judging teachers' off-duty behavior through statute and what the courts have said about this issue. The statutory schemes of the 50 states and the courts' analysis of the same indicate that educators are held to a higher standard of behavior than people in other professions. Teachers play a unique role in U.S. culture and society. They cannot practice their profession in public without a state license, and consequently, their behavior in and out of school is examined closely and often harshly. Teachers stand "in loco parentis," and children learn important values and morals from them. What may be an excusable indiscretion for others may be an intolerable error of judgment for educators. This paper elaborates on several grounds for action against an educator's license relating to off-duty behavior, focusing on actions by several states: immorality, immoral conduct, and lacking good moral character; conduct involving moral turpitude; unfitness to teach; conduct unbecoming of the profession; and conviction of enumerated crimes. The final section explains that in order to revoke a teaching certificate, the state board of education must show a nexus between the teacher's conduct and duties. (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A