Special AVM Network Day – August 7

I.T. Systems to Support Volunteer Management – A Special AVM Network Day  (9.30am – 4pm, August 7)

Thinking about whether an I.T. system could help you better manage your volunteering programme?  Confused about the options?  Keen to learn from those who have already made the leap to introduce a system?

This AVM Network Day is entirely focussed on exploring these issues and the various experiences of those:

  1. developing a bespoke system
  2. using an off the shelf model and
  3. customising an existing product.

Speakers from RSPB, Blue Cross and National Trust will share their experiences of defining requirements, procurement, implementation and transition to BAU and facilitated discussions will enable participations to share their own experiences and ask the questions that matter to them.

This event is kindly sponsored by Blackbaud and takes place in London on August 7.

Places are limited and bookings are now open

Member Exclusive Event September 7th – Book Your Place Now!

Engaging senior leaders in volunteering:  workshop, book launch and drinks reception

AVM are pleased to host an exclusive event for AVM members to launch the new UK Edition of “From The Top Down – The Executive Role in Successful Volunteer Involvement”, written by Rob Jackson and Susan J Ellis.

First published in 1986 and now completely updated for the UK this classic book explores the importance of senior leadership commitment to volunteer involvement and Susan and Rob will be launching the new UK edition at this exclusive event for AVM members on September 7.

Event details below and you can book our place here.  Hurry as places are limited to 40.

Date:                     September 7 2015

Time:                    3.30 – 7.00pm

Venue:                 Girlguiding, Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1W 0PT

Agenda:

3.30pm               Registration

 

4.00pm               Welcome from Girlguiding        

Girlguiding involve over 100k volunteers in their work with girls and young women, including their most senior volunteer, the Chief Guide.  Chief Executive Julie Bentley will welcome us to their newly refurbished venue and reflect on her own personal commitment to volunteering.

 

4.15pm                 Workshop:  Engaging Senior Leaders in volunteering:  why it matters and how to do it successfully.  (Rob Jackson and Susan J. Ellis)

Drawing on contents from the book Rob and Susan will lead a workshop aimed at increasing awareness of the need to engage senior leaders and offering practical tips on how to do this well.      If you have ever struggled to get your Directors and CEOs interested and engaged in issues of volunteer management and leadership this workshop is for you.

 

6.00pm                 Book launch and drinks reception           

Susan will introduce the book and all attendees will receive a signed copy and have the opportunity to discuss this informally over drinks.

7.00pm                 Close

AVM Networking Event – 29th May 2015

AVM’s next networking event will take place on Friday, 29 May 2015 (10:00am – 4:00pm) in Coventry (University of Warwick Students’ Union, Coventry, CV4 7AL).

10am Arrivals, Tea and coffee and Informal networking

10.30am Welcome from AVM & Structured networking

_______________________________________
11am Resilience – the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.
Lisa Cowley, Volunteer Manager at the British Horse Society

Lisa will share experiences for her recent participation in the Museums and Resilient Leadership programme. She will reflect on the range of tools and techniques featured in the programme and how they can be used to build your own resilience as a volunteer manager and leader in any sector, aswell as overall organisational resilience. Key questions considered will be:
• What does resilient leadership look like in the voluntary sector?
• What does resilience mean for you as a volunteer manager and leader?
• Nurturing your assets
• Mapping your galaxy.
________________________________________
12.30pm Lunch – Please bring your own
________________________________________
1.15pm How to be successful in attracting, recruiting and managing student volunteers.
Sarah Newell and Kim Waite – Volunteer Coordinators, Warwick Volunteers, University of Warwick

Drawing on their experience as Coordinators of one of the UK’s most successful student volunteering programmes Sarah and Kim will offer advice and guidance on what to do (and what to avoid!) if you’re keen to involve more student volunteers in your organisation.
________________________________________
2.30pm Open Space (with tea and coffee)

An opportunity for attendees to lead or request discussions on topics relevant to them, drawing on peer support to explore challenges and celebrate successes

3.30pm Final comments and evaluation

4.00pm Close
________________________________________
Why not join AVM and save on the cost of your ticket? You can join here

Directions
For information on how to get to Warwick University see http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/about/visiting/
On campus head for the Students’ Union building and go to Reception.

To book your place click here

Learning for life

The other day I went to an event for professional associations on what I thought would be a fairly dry theme: continuing professional development (CPD). A topic to get the pulse racing on a weekday morning without the need for caffeine if ever there was one!

However, behind the fairly grey acronym is something really profound and golden. At its heart, CPD is really about how we aspire to live and work.

The learning we do throughout our professional careers has a huge impact on how we’re able to approach work-life balance and ultimately, what we’re able to accomplish as professionals. As Prof Andy Friedman of PARN calls it – CPD is essentially: “Lifelong learning for professionals”.

Changing shape of careers

This shift in how CPD is viewed is set against common trends affecting all kinds of professions, such as the decline of the single career trajectory, the increase in transitions and change we can expect as we go through our career, and the longer working life we have ahead of us. Many of us in volunteer management would recognise these trends.

If the shape of careers has changed, so has understanding about how learning works.

For example, it’s no longer education, it’s learning – where the primary responsibility for this learning lies with us as individuals, not our employers or organisations. There’s also the huge growth in the amount of informal learning out there and the fact our learning happens in an increasingly complex and fast-changing environment.

Hilary Lindsay has written a book that addresses many of these questions: “Adaptability: The Secret of Lifelong Learning”. Her background is in the accountancy profession where she is now Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) Vice President, as well as a researcher and lecturer at The Open University. She has a huge range of experience including volunteering with Samaritans for over 20 years.

If you just read the word ‘accountancy’ and thought “what could this book have that’s relevant to volunteer management?” – hear me out.

Hilary’s research has led to her developing a very interesting model of professional learning that can help us all as individuals organise our learning as professionals.

A new dimension

She looked at three dimensions of learning as recognised in the academic literature:

  • Cognitive learning – concerned with the acquisition of knowledge, skills and understanding through thinking (learning through thinking)
  • Interpersonal learning – related to interaction with others and with the environment and to areas such as participation, engagement, communication and cooperation (learning through doing)
  • Intrapersonal learning – involves the assimilation of learning and the development of the individual as becoming, our identity and how we see ourselves in our communities (learning through being)

Learning activities generally include each of these dimensions, but may be weighted to some more than others.

Learning activities

In the survey Hilary Lindsay carried out as part of her research, she asked about the following learning activities:

  • Attending courses, conferences and seminars
  • Reading technical material
  • Reading magazines, newspapers and journals
  • Studying online learning modules
  • Accessing the internet for information
  • Participating in workshops with peers
  • Interacting with experts
  • Doing your job on a regular basis
  • Reflecting on your performance
  • Being shown by others how to do certain activities and tasks
  • Watching and listening to others while they carry out their work

Respondents indicated that they were much more likely to recognise the learning activities towards the top of the list as professional development.

She also noted that those learning activities towards the bottom of the list that were less likely to be recognised as professional development, also tended to be more informal and more focused on learning as participation or interpersonal.

Conversely, the learning activities that were more often recognised as CPD, tended to be more formal and more weighted towards cognitive learning.

Why is this?

Well, one answer is that formal learning tends to be the most easily measurable superficially, e.g. hours on a course or number of attendances. In the last few years, there’s been a considerable move towards measuring this learning in terms of outputs (learning outcomes), rather than inputs (e.g. hours of studying). This has rather level the playing field between informal and formal learning.

A key finding of Hilary Lindsay’s research was that it demonstrated the existence of a learning iceberg, where more traditional learning activities were more visible, but at the same time, all kinds of important learning activities were hidden from view.

She made the point that many of these more hidden activities, such as learning with/from others, learning on the job and learning through reflection were often crucial to ensuring our competence as professionals. As a result it’s crucial that they are not left out of our own professional learning strategy.

She went further, indicating that even more hidden are certain attributes that make us more adaptable in our careers, such as learning to engage, explore, experiment, keep a positive attitude and have self-belief. These are attributes that we can use and make a profound difference to how we live our lives, not just how we approach our work.

What are the lessons for us in volunteer management?

Many of us with restricted training budgets or the relative lack of formal training opportunities might find it hard to empathise with an over-reliance on cognitive training.

But from another perspective, there is a real opportunity for us in volunteer management to take advantage of the prevailing trends in learning and career development.

It’s likely that a lot of us have relatively greater opportunities to engage, explore, experiment, etc., than other professions that are more heavily regulated, more highly structured and less flexible given their legacy approach to CPD.

Volunteer management professionals are potentially much better placed than others, to achieve a really balanced approach to professional learning that includes the cognitive, intrapersonal and interpersonal dimensions that sustain us in the longer term.

It’s also an opportunity to review our current learning and include many activities we do that include learning with others, learning on the job or learning through reflection. It’s possible we’re actually already doing a lot of this and with a bit of readjustment many of the activities we take part in could become hugely valuable learning for our own professional development.

Next time you review your professional learning, try reflecting on your learning from these three key perspectives:

  • Cognitive – How’s your learning equipping you with the skills your need?
  • Interpersonal – How’s your learning helping you fully engage and participate with others?
  • Intrapersonal – How’s your learning enabling you to become the professional you aspire to be

Level 5 Management of Volunteers training programme

Are you a Volunteer Manager looking for further skills development in leadership and interested in gaining a nationally recognised qualification that will challenge your thinking, expand your knowledge and support you in your role?

Starting February 2015, this programme led by Sue Jones will combine face to face workshops, action learning, coaching and on-line activities, leading to completion of a formal assessment and achievement of the ILM Level 5 Certificate in the Management of Volunteers.

For further details of the programme – see brochure.

The dates and format for the face to face learning sessions are as follows:

  • February 26th – full day workshop including programme Induction
  • March 26th – half day action learning set
  • May 21st – full day workshop
  • June 25th – full day session incorporating a half day workshop and action learning set
  • July 23rd – half day action learning set

All sessions will take place at The Gateway, Sankey Street, Warrington, Cheshire, WA1 1SR

Course fees are £1,450 per learner and include access to all learning materials, on-going tutor support, scheduled individual coaching via telephone/Skype, plus ILM registration and assessment. Lunch and refreshments are included in the cost.

For further info – see Sue Jones’ post on ivo.org.

AVM Network Day – 10th December

The second AVM Network Day is taking place on 10th December (10am-4pm) at the Holiday Inn, Coram St, Bloomsbury, London, WC1N 1HT.

Entry costs £45.17 (AVM members £27.15)


Book your place online here  


Programme 

10am – Arrivals, Coffee and Informal networking

10.30am – Welcome from AVM and Structured networking

11am – Volunteer management is like a decathlon: it involves hurdles, sprints, endurance – and a willingness to throw things out! Steve Gee, Head of Volunteering and Branches, National Autistic Society

Presentation and Q&A – discussion on current volunteering developments and challenges in the UK’s leading charity for people with autism.

12.30pm Lunch – Please bring your own lunch as lunch IS NOT provided

1.15pm – “Light touch volunteer management – what does it look like and how do you do it? Wendy McGauley, Community Engagement Officer at Leonard Cheshire Disability and Clive Pankhurst, Head of Volunteering at Diabetes UK – Presentation and Q&A.

2.30pm Open Space – an opportunity for attendees to lead or request discussions on topics relevant to them, drawing on peer support to explore challenges and celebrate successes.

3.30pm Final comments and evaluation

4.00pm Close

Professional development for volunteer managers: think lateral

International Volunteer Managers (IVM) Day is the perfect opportunity for us as practitioners to reflect on our work and take stock of our professional development.

However, in some ways this is not so straightforward. The profession of volunteer management is still in the early stages of development. As a result, we lack the points of reference professionals from more established professions take for granted, such as:

  • Our area of expertise is not widely known or recognised
  • We lack a clear agreement on the scope of volunteer management as a profession
  • We’re exposed to competing practice models (e.g. are we experts, service providers or partners of volunteers and beneficiaries?)
  • Expectations in terms of continuing professional development vary widely

Where can we get our bearings as we seek to set a course through the uncharted seas of our own professional development in volunteer management?

1. Look where we’ve come from

The profession of volunteer management is in its infancy, so it’s even more important to make the most of the literature that has been written, on the professionalisation of volunteer management. Over the last 15 years or so, there have been a growing number of scholarly articles in this area.

The Right Stuff: New ways of thinking about managing volunteers” by Meta Zimmeck (2000) can help give perspective on the question of practice models from “modern management” to the “home grown” model.

Organising cultures: voluntarism and professionalism in UK charity shops” by Richard Goodall (2000) considers the meaning of “professional” in the context of volunteer management in charity shops.  Goodall argues volunteer managers could be every bit as ‘professional’ as retail managers but the nature of their expertise was not so readily recognised. An idea that still chimes with our discussion over 13 years on. Pat Gay’s “Bright Future: Developing Volunteer Management” (2001) sets out recommendations for the creation of a new professional body which are interesting to reflect on at this current stage in the development of the Association of Volunteer Managers.

Another discussion that’s useful to get in context is that of standards. “A Standards Framework for Managing Volunteers – A Report to the Voluntary Sector National Training Organisation” (2002) sets out a background to this question on what are the knowledge and skills required in volunteer management. This provided a lot of the groundwork of the National Occupational Standards for Management of Volunteers (2003).

2. Look across

Colleagues across the world have been working on strikingly similar challenges of how to develop and grow the profession of those working in volunteer management. Organisations and groups have developed different solutions – often with different emphasis – and each holds key lessons for us in the UK.

It’s inspirational to be able to read about the stories such as that of the “Volunteer Management Professionals of Canada“, an organisation with over 30 years of championing volunteer management, or the Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration in the United States which has developed a popular qualification in volunteer management.

There’s also the “Australasian Association for Managers of Volunteers”, a professional network in Australasia, and “New Zealand Competencies for Managers of Volunteers”, developed by Volunteering New Zealand, a very new approach to the challenge of improving standards and training across the profession of volunteer management.

On the question of principles and values, The Association of Leaders in Volunteer Engagement and the Universal Declaration on the Profession (2001) made in Canada are incredibly valuable.

3. Look around

There’s a temptation to look inwards on IVM day and focus on volunteer management. However, it’s really important we don’t restrict our learning possibilities. There’s a huge amount we can learn from other professions and how they have developed. From health to the legal sector, from education and social work, from finance to project management – there are huge lessons for us. Our context is incredibly distinctive, however many of the issues we face aren’t. The professional association community is incredibly vibrant in the UK and there are huge opportunities if we can think laterally.

4. Look next to you

Your colleagues and peers are just there and in today’s world more contactable than ever. There are also sorts of ways in which you can network and learn about your profession by talking through the issues you face, with others going through similar challenges themselves.

Communities and networks such as: ivo.org, VMM, AVM and UKVPMs. There’ also NNVIA, AVSM, NAVSM. But it’s also worth similar professional networks beyond volunteer management through organisations such as PARN (Professional Associations Research Network).

5. Look forward

Finally, think about what we need as a profession that can help us all in our future professional development. If you’d be interested in helping AVM develop and curate online information and content on professional development of volunteer management, please get in touch.

AVM Conference 2014 – presentations and talks


Is formal volunteering finished?

The latest Community Life Survey suggests formal volunteering has fallen for the first time in a couple of years. The talk on the street is about social action, micro-volunteering, and co-production. Are we seeing a seismic shift in the way people engage in their communities which suggests that the days of mass organised volunteering are coming to an end. Or is this all just a flash in the pan and normal service will soon be resumed?

Online here

Dr Justin Davis-Smith – Executive Director of Volunteering and Development, NCVO


a) Youth Volunteering

An interactive workshop with participants being asked to consider why they want to attract young people as volunteers and how compatible this is with what young people want from volunteering.
Sophie Wellings – Freelance Trainer & Consultant


 

b) The challenges of working with Remote Volunteers – what does this mean for our practice as volunteer managers and leaders?

Nikki Squelch, Head of Volunteering Development, Alzheimer’s Society &
Helen Johnston,Technology Support Service Manager, RNIB


 

c) Professionalization of Volunteer Management – progress towards a code of practice for professionals in volunteer management

Debbie Usiskin, AVM Director &
Patrick Daniels, AVM Director

Write up online here


AVM Annual Report 2014 [download PDF]

AGM – Treasurer’s report [download PDF]


 a) Friends with Benefits: Why volunteer managers must learn to learn from others

Tiger de Souza, Head of Volunteering, NSPCC &
Helen Timbrell, Volunteering and Community Involvement Director, National Trust

Online discussion


 

b) Valuing Volunteer Management – How do you do it and what works for securing resources and top corridor buy in

Debbie Usiskin, Volunteers Transition Lead at North London Hospice
Rob Jackson, Rob Jackson Consulting


 

c) ‘Light touch’ Volunteer Management – what does it look like and how do you do it

Wendy McGauley, Community Engagement Officer, Leonard Cheshire Disability &
Clive Pankhurst, Head of Volunteering, Diabetes UK


The new alchemy: how volunteer managers turn donations of time into human gold?

nfpSynergy have just completed a 12 month project to research a whole host of aspects of volunteering. The final report includes a survey of 500 volunteer managers, a review of volunteering trends and the impact of politics and economics on volunteering. This talk covers the key elements of the report as well as looking the key issues that make volunteering thrive.
Joe Saxton – Driver of Ideas, nfpSynergy

Professionalisation of volunteer management

Professionalisation has been a key issue in volunteer management for many years.

Yet, it remains highly controversial and tends to polarise debate. As a result, many in volunteer management are wary of the topic.

Many of the arguments for and against have been rehearsed and are familiar to many of us.

Arguments for professionalisation

In the ‘for’ camp, there are arguments such as:

  • Volunteer management is more than just a job and professionalisation helps it evolve and grow further.
  • Professionalisation helps those in volunteer management to be seen as more autonomous by colleagues and the wider public.
  • Professionalisation helps practitioners in volunteer management to identify and coalesce around a set of distinct principles and values.

Arguments against professionalisation

In the ‘against’ camp, there are arguments such as:

  • Professionalisation runs the risk of making volunteer management more bureaucratic.
  • There’s an irreconcilable difference between the professionalisation and volunteering.
  • There’s a danger that professionalisation would push up costs and make volunteering more expensive.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of the arguments, but it helps give a picture of the issues at stake.

Why then is it so important to raise this issue of professionalisation for volunteer management when we know it can create such division?

The answer is because it gets at something fundamental that has implications for all those in volunteer management: how we organise ourselves as practitioners.

Discourse, not destination

Before going further, it’s important to recognise one thing.

Professionalisation should not be dominated by a discussion about its destination. Professionalisation sets us on a course where all sorts of outcomes are possible – the destination is just one part of the discussion.

Professionalisation is useful because it provides us with a discourse, the terms of the discussion, about how we as practitioners of volunteer management want to organise ourselves. Professionalisation provides us with a context in which we can reflect on how we organise ourselves as practitioners.

We move together

There are many challenges, but one we need to keep at the forefront in this discussion is that we move forward together. Volunteer management covers so many areas of work, so many sectors of the economy, so many disciplines and approaches. We need to ensure that professionalisation is an inclusive discussion that brings us closer together, not one that fragments our community.

We need to lead

There is also an issue of leadership. Not to lead this discussion leaves us exposed to factors such as government policy or market forces that, we know, often influence the development of professions.

Some advocate that we’d be better off making the most of our low profile. After all, the fact that we’re off the radar of decision makers or policy makers can be an advantage – in many situations, it lets us get on and do what we want. However, this strategy is not tenable if we have ambitions to greater organise ourselves.

Professionals, professions and professional bodies

So what should we do to greater organise ourselves?

First, let’s unpick the different concepts that are often jumbled up in the professionalisation debate: professionals, professions and professional bodies.

Many of us already consider ourselves to be professionals – and some of us may already be members of a recognised profession such as the law, medicine, social care, education, and so on. Some argue that the most fruitful way to proceed in professionalisation is to focus on the idea of professionalism. After all, professionalism is something that each of us can decide to do at an individual level – it’s a matter of acting and approaching our work in a professional way. However, there’s a limit to how greater professionalism can tackle our central question: how we organise ourselves as practitioners.

There are professional bodies, there are many models out there – trade unions, learned societies, regulators and many others. But until we’ve thought through how we want to organise ourselves, it’s difficult to have a clear vision of the kind of professional body we need.

Professionalisation focuses our debate on the profession we want – as once we’ve agreed some of the fundamental issues of building a profession – we can really advance on the question of how we organise ourselves.

So how do we build a profession?

I’ve adapted the following factors from the work of Dr Stan Lester “On professions and being professional” (2010).

1. Knowledge – What knowledge underpins our profession?

2. Scope of the profession – What areas are covered by our profession?

3. Practice model – What model of practice fits with our profession?

4. Entry into the profession – How do we see entry into our profession?

5. Ongoing profession development – What framework for continuing professional development do we need for our profession?

6. Ethical framework – What principles are essential to our profession?

To develop a profession for practitioners of volunteer management, we need to address:

1. Knowledge – what knowledge underpins our profession?

In the development of professions in the last century or so there are mainly two approaches to understanding and valuing professional knowledge.

Technocratic knowledge

The first developed in an industrial world is the rational and scientific technocratic model- where professional knowledge is:

  • part of a relatively slowly-evolving body of knowledge
  • largely produced through formal research from relevant academic disciplines

Professional knowledge is passed on to practitioners as curriculum developments, updating events, publications and advisory notes.

Reflective knowledge

The second is developed in a post-industrial society according to a reflective model. See Donald A. Schön, The Reflective Practitioner: how professionals think in action, Basic Books (New York, 1983). In this approach professional knowledge is:

  • actively used and changed by practitioners as they work
  • evolves more quickly, created in the practice setting, as well as through academic research
  • varies depending on the context in which it is applied

With the reflective model, the idea of a monolithic ‘body of knowledge’ is less important than the idea of knowledgeable and knowledge-generating practitioners who are able to reflect on practice and produce knowledge from action.

2. Scope of the profession – what areas are covered by our profession?

This is fundamental – if volunteer management is to be a profession – we need to be able to define what that profession covers.

Professional bodies have used the following ways to define the scope of their profession:

  • By reference to the education and training of practitioners (the profession’s boundaries are defined by the curriculum)
  • Protected definition of what practitioners do (supplements curriculum-based approach)
  • Define profession by roles and functions undertaken by practitioners rather than by  education/ training (develop competence standards for range of occupations and job roles)
  • By descriptions of practice not functional model, but one based on capability, where essential nature of the profession is still defined in output terms – the emphasis not on functions and boundaries (what does the profession cover?) but rather on core capability (what are practitioners equipped to do?)

3. Practice model – what model of practice fits with our profession?

We need to set out our model of practice and how we structure our professional relationship to those we work with. The following three are common models:

‘Delivery system’ (delivery as expert)

Practitioner assesses a situation and delivers a solution based on their expertise. This kind of approach is perhaps typified by the traditional medical model of diagnosis and prescription.

‘Delivery system (delivery as part of a contract)

Practitioner is a producer and delivers to a consumer. Rather than putting emphasis on expertise and judgement, emphasis is on standards, quality and meeting the consumer’s needs.

‘Realisation system’

Professional working with the client or stakeholders in a more collaborative way to produce outcomes that are owned by the latter. While it still involves the use of expertise, it is closer in principle to the work of a counsellor or facilitator.

4. Entry into the profession – how do we see entry into our profession?

At AVM we’re receiving more and more enquiries from people interested in getting involved in volunteer management. As its profile grows, so does the need for some kind of pathway into the profession. The following are two example models:

Sequential development route

A typical technocratic development route consists of a university degree, possibly a post-degree professional course, and a period of supervised practice. This often creates a limited gateway through which all need to pass to enter the profession. This can be enforced through regulation which may insist on a certain level or type of qualification.

Integrated route

In the integrated route practice and theory may be developed alongside each other, either in the workplace or in a ‘practicum’ that mirrors the workplace. Greater flexibility exists as to pathways into the profession.

5. Ongoing profession development – what framework for continuing professional development do we need for our profession?

The approach to continuing professional development (CPD) in many professions is strongly influenced by the technocratic paradigm. As a result, it’s typically focused on meeting requirements through approved courses or through a minimum number of hours or points spent on approved activities.

More recently, there’s been a tendency to move away from these input measures towards a more flexible ‘learning cycle’ approach, where practitioners need to identify their development needs, act to meet them, and reflect on the results.

A more reflective approach to ongoing development sees it as evolving a growing range of abilities that follow or direct the practitioner’s practice.

6. Ethical framework – what principles are essential to our profession?

Most professions have some form of ethical code that either takes the form of a code of practice or is part of a more general set of principles that governs behaviour in the profession.

“It is because professionals face complex and unpredictable situations that they need a specialised form of knowledge; if they are to apply that knowledge, it is argued that they require the autonomy to make their own judgement. Given that they have that autonomy, it is essential that they act with responsibility – collectively they need to develop appropriate professional values.” See “The Teacher’s Reflective Practice Handbook: Becoming an Extended Professional through Capturing evidence-informed practice” (p11) By Paula Zwozdiak-Myers

According to the BACP: “Principles direct attention to important ethical responsibilities… Ethical decisions that are strongly supported by one or more of these principles without any contradiction from others may be regarded as reasonably well founded. However, practitioners will encounter circumstances in which it is impossible to reconcile all the applicable principles and choosing between principles may be required. A decision or course of action does not necessarily become unethical merely because it is contentious or other practitioners would have reached different conclusions in similar circumstances. A practitioner’s obligation is to consider all the relevant circumstances with as much care as is reasonably possible and to be appropriately accountable for decisions made.”