Each teacher, upon entering the profession, assumes a number of obligations, one of which is to adhere to a set of principles that defines professional conduct. These principles are reflected in the WV Employee Code of Conduct (Policy 5902). Violation of the code of conduct may result in disciplinary action against a teacher’s license.
The West Virginia Board of Education recognizes that the capabilities and conduct of all school employees greatly affect the quality of education provided to students in the public schools. The state Board of Education further believes that all school employees should be intrinsically motivated by the importance of the job that they do. The purpose of the Employee Code of Conduct is to establish appropriate standards of conduct for all West Virginia school personnel.
The code applies to all school personnel employed by a county board of education whether employed on a regular full-time basis or otherwise. It provides that all West Virginia school employees shall:
- Exhibit professional behavior by showing positive examples of preparedness, communication, fairness, punctuality, attendance, language and appearance.
- Contribute, cooperate and participate in creating an environment in which all employees/students are accepted and are provided the opportunity to achieve at the highest levels in all areas of development.
- Maintain a safe and healthy environment, free from harassment, intimidation, bullying, substance abuse, and/ or violence and free from bias and discrimination.
- Create a culture of caring through understanding and support.
- Immediately intervene in any code of conduct violation that has a negative impact on students, in a manner that preserves confidentiality and the dignity of each person.
- Demonstrate responsible citizenship by maintaining a high standard of conduct, self-control and moral/ ethical behavior.
- Comply with all federal and West Virginia laws, policies, regulations and procedures.
The Code of Conduct also requires that West Virginia public school employees respond immediately and consistently to incidents of bullying, harassment, intimidation, substance abuse, and/or violence or any other code of conduct violation that impacts negatively on students in a manner that effectively addresses incidents, deters future incidents and affirms respect for individuals.