Legislative Requirements of Teaching in Your Specialist Area

1 January 2017

Working as a Financial Capability tutor my personal and work values are led by the ethos for Citizens Advice Bureau, my employer; here we value diversity, promote equality and challenge discrimination; our aims and principles set out to both provide the advice people need for the problems they face and improve the policies and practices that affect people’s lives. There are many legislative requirements (laws), and codes of practice (directives and professional ethics) that need to be considered in a learning environment.

My organisation has its own policies and proceedures that are applicable to the particular environment; these underpin the legislation to act according to the law as defined in an Act of Parliament and usually enforceable through the courts. My interpretation of ones that will effect me as a teacher are given here. The Health and Safely at Work Act (1974) Everyone has a responsibility for their own safety at work and also a duty to protect the safety and welfare of others, this effects every single organisation.

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Even if the learners are adults there are still rules and regulations that must be adhered to; As a teacher I need to be fully aware of these rules and ensure that any learners I teach are too. I should always make the class aware of the nearest fire exists and advise of who the fist-aiders are within the building. I must always follow best practise and to lead by example. Risk Assessments are also the responsibility of the teacher in order to establish practices that minimise risk and record any high risk activities. I need to analyse any potential risks when instructing activities within the class.

It is my responsibility to assess any risk levels prior to commencement of any tasks in order to minimise the risks. If there are any accidents or incidents, I must also keep a record of these. There are then the legislations that are drawn from the Human Rights Act 2000. Disability Discrimination Act (1995 and 2005) Equality Act 2010 Teachers must respect these laws have been passed to ensure that no one is discriminated against irrespective of any disability (physical or mental) they may have or their gender, age, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation or marital status/domestic circumstances.

For the teacher this means ensuring language, handouts and other learning materials are free from bias; and that inappropriate comments are challenged within the classroom. The environment and all support structures should enable access and include facilities to meet all learners’ needs. . I must ensure that any activities I set are suitable for all learners to participate and must not make any learner feel excluded by their disability. Also when advertising courses and delivering learning, a teacher should not stereotype or in any way disadvantage a group of learners.

I would also be using Safeguarding of Vulnerable Adults training when working with my students. Data Protection Act 1998 The DPA requires any organisation that holds sensitive data on anyone for over two months to register as data users. As a teacher, I need to be cautious of how I store my learners personal or sensitive information. I should never share someone’s personal or sensitive information with any other person. Freedom of information act 2000

As an amendment to the Data Protection act the freedom of information act makes provision for the disclosure of information held by public authorities or by persons providing services for them. I should be aware of what my students can request to see when I hold information on them. There are also three other pieces that I would consider in my role The Further Education and Training act 2007, for its requirements on the LSC and on further education institutions to have regard to guidance in relation to consultation with learners, potential learners and employers.

And the codes of practice issued by; NIACE regarding Safer Practice and Safer Learning; these help the student to focus on their rights and responsibilities when participating in the lifelong learning sector. They address issues such as harm, abuse and personal safety when taking part in any kind of learning, outlining things that could be wrong, and giving students contact details if they feel that they need to report any wrong doing, without needing access to the teacher. Also the Institute for Learning Code of Practice for Teachers 2008

Code of Professional Practice, which seeks to protect learners and the public interest and will apply to all members of the Institute for Learning . The codes purpose is to promote, value and develop the professionalism of all learning and skills practitioners. The Code outlines the behaviours expected of members – for the benefit of learners, employers, the profession and the wider community. The code lists seven behaviours for members to uphold; Professional Integrity, Respect, Reasonable Care, Professional Practice, Criminal Offence Disclosure, Responsibility during Institute Investigations, Responsibility to the Institute.

These will all have an affect on what happens both in and out of my classroom and must be at the forefront of every lesson and lesson plan for a teacher. They will be used in tutor/student contracting and in appeals and complaints policies, and so it is important that I keep up to date with these legislations and codes of practice and part of my responsibility is to make sure that they are being adhered to and that I know what procedure to follow if this is not the case.

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