Reporting Misconduct

Florida Department of Education

Office of Professional Practices Services


The following behavior may be indicative of misconduct that should be reported:

  • being alone with a student in a dark or closed room or secluded area

  • behaving in an overly friendly or familiar way failing to maintain an appropriate professional boundary with a student

  • using forceful or unnecessary physical contact with a student

  • administering discipline not compliant with district policy

  • accepting or offering of gifts for return of a favor or privilege from students or colleagues

  • badgering or habitually teasing a student

  • mocking or belittling a student

  • chronically embarrassing a student

  • displaying prejudice or bigotry against a student

  • suspicion of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol

  • failing to properly supervise students or ensure student safety

  • cheating, falsifying information or testing violations

  • retaliating against a student or colleague for reporting misconduct

  • bantering or engaging in colloquial or slang communications with a student

  • directing or using profane, offensive, or explosive language in the presence of students

  • making lewd or suggestive comments or overtures toward a student or colleague


Apply the litmus test:

  1. If you feel uncomfortable

  2. If you question the person's motives or actions

  3. If you are unsure


How to report misconduct:

  • Report allegations or suspicion of misconduct by an instructional personnel member to your school administrator or contact

  • Report allegations or suspicion of misconduct by your school administrator to your school board authority

  • Document the activities or details of the event

  • Secure evidence (if applicable)


Who should report misconduct?

All employees and agents of a district school board, charter school, or private school have a duty to report misconduct. If you are aware of or observe misconduct REPORT IT IMMEDIATELY!


Who should you report?

  • Classroom teachers

  • Paraprofessionals

  • Substitute teachers

  • Librarians, guidance counselors and social workers

  • Career specialists and school psychologists

  • Principals, Assistant Principals and Deans


If someone tells you about misconduct, be a LEADER:

Listen

Evaluate

Act immediately

Document

Encourage

Report


Failure to report misconduct

Possible penalties for instructional personnel or site administrators who fail to report misconduct may include:

  • Written reprimand

  • Suspension with or without pay

  • Termination of employment

  • Discipline/Sanctions on an educator's certificate



"A teacher affects eternity... he can never tell where his influence stops." - Henry B. Adams




Florida Statutes and Rules


Florida Statutes s 1006.061 states all employees and agents of the district school board, charter schools and private schools that accept scholarship students, have an obligation to report misconduct by an instructional personnel member or school administrator.


Florida Statutes s. 1012.23 outlines disciplinary procedures regarding district employment contracts with instructional personnel staff, supervisors and school principals


Florida Statutes s. 1012.795 provides the Education Practices Commission the authority to issue disciplinary action against an individual's Florida Educator certificate


Florida Statutes s. 1012.796 provides authority for the Department of Education to investigate and prosecute allegations of educator misconduct


Florida Statutes s. 1012.01 defines public school instructional personnel, administrative personnel, school volunteers, education support employees and managers


State Board of Education Rule 6B- 1.001 defines the Code of Ethics of the Education Profession in Florida


State Board of Education Rule 6B-1.006 defines the Principles of Professional Conduct of the Education Profession in Florida



For further information, contact:


Florida Department of Education

Office of Professional Practices Services

Turlington Building

325 West Gaines Street

(850) 245-0438

www.myfloridateacher.com



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