America’s continuing crisis has brought the role of public school teachers and education to the forefront of cultural divisiveness. Many in education have come to believe that their duty is to educate students in the new norms of race consciousness to repair past injurious beliefs about themselves and others. Other Americans, mostly the less wealthy and with less prestigious educational credentials, are not supportive of this new educational agenda.
The conflict puts on the table for all societies the ethical responsibilities of teachers in public service.
As the approach of moral capitalism directs attention to the formation of robust social and human capitals, education is a most important capital input to successful wealth creation and social justice. Teachers, therefore, have important ethical responsibilities to their students; teachers are servant leaders in social capital formation.
In addition, the Caux Round Table Principles for Government provide ethical guidelines for those teachers working in public schools.
With a notable action last week by the National Education Association to advocate critical race theory in our public schools, I thought it timely to comment on the responsibilities of public school teachers as holders of a public office, which confers on them authority over students to be used as a public trust.