Mission

Mission: Our mission at the Atala Montessori School for Creative Expression is to provide an educational environment that enables each child to realize his or her richest potential for learning and to become a self-directed, confident, and contributing member of the family, local, and global communities.

About Us: We have over 150 years of teaching experience within our walls, and with that experience comes a level of patience and understanding few schools offer. In addition to a traditional Montessori education, we have infused our curriculum with art, music, computers, science, agriculture, and physical education, as well as a wide variety of after-school activities including sugar art, music lessons, painting and drawing, volleyball, and ballet.

Standards of Ethical Conduct

Atala Montessori School for Creative Expression

The work rules and standards of conduct for Atala Montessori School for Creative Expression are important, and the Company regards them seriously. All employees are urged to become familiar with these rules and standards. In addition, employees are expected to follow the rules and standards faithfully in doing their own jobs and conducting Atala Montessori School for Creative Expression’s business. Please note that any employee who deviates from these rules and standards will be subject to corrective action, up to and including immediate termination of employment.

While not intended to list all the forms of behavior that are considered unacceptable in the workplace, the following are examples of rule infractions or misconduct that may result in disciplinary action, up to and including immediate termination of employment. These examples are in no way a limitation on or intended to change the Company’s at-will policy.

–    Theft or inappropriate removal or possession of property

–    Falsification of timekeeping records

–    Working under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs

–    Possession, manufacture, distribution, sale, transfer, dispensation or use of alcohol or illegal drugs in the workplace

–    Fighting or threatening violence in the workplace

–    Immoral actions or intimidating others

–    Boisterous or disruptive activity in the workplace

–    Negligence or improper conduct leading to damage of Company-owned or customer-owned property

–    Insubordination or other disrespectful conduct

–    Violation of safety or health rules

–    Smoking in the workplace

–    Sexual or other unlawful or unwelcome harassment and touching

–    Excessive absenteeism or any absence without notice

–    Unauthorized use of telephones, or other Company-owned equipment

–    Using Company equipment for purposes other than business (e.g., playing games on computers or personal Internet usage)

–    Unauthorized disclosure of business “secrets” or confidential information

–    Violation of personnel policies

–    Unsatisfactory performance or conduct

These rules apply to any and all interactions with customers, fellow employees or anyone else associated with the workplace. 

(The following is adapted from the Code of Ethics of the Education Profession in Florida and Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education Profession in Florida)

1. Our school values the worth and dignity of every person, the pursuit of truth, devotion to excellence, acquisition of knowledge, and the nurture of democratic citizenship. Essential to the achievement of these standards are the freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal opportunity for all.

2. Our primary concern is the student and the development of the student’s potential. Employees will therefore strive for professional growth and will seek to exercise the best professional judgment and integrity.

3. Concern for the student requires that our instructional personnel:

a. Shall make reasonable effort to protect the student from conditions harmful to learning and/or to the student’s mental and/or physical health and/or safety.

b. Shall not unreasonably restrain a student from independent action in pursuit of learning.

c. Shall not unreasonably deny a student access to diverse points of view.

d. Shall not intentionally suppress or distort subject matter relevant to a student’s academic program.

e. Shall not intentionally expose a student to unnecessary embarrassment or disparagement.

f. Shall not intentionally violate or deny a student’s legal rights.

g. Shall not harass or discriminate against any student on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, marital status, handicapping condition, sexual orientation, or social and family background and shall make reasonable effort to assure that each student is protected from harassment or discrimination.

h. Shall not exploit a relationship with a student for personal gain or advantage.

i. Shall keep in confidence personally identifiable information obtained in the course of professional service, unless disclosure serves professional purposes or is required by law.

4. Aware of the importance of maintaining the respect and confidence of colleagues, of students, of parents, and of the community, employees of our school must display the highest degree of ethical conduct. This commitment requires that our employees:

a. Shall maintain honesty in all professional dealings.

b. Shall not on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, marital status, handicapping condition if otherwise qualified, or social and family background deny to a colleague professional benefits or advantages or participation in any professional organization.

c. Shall not interfere with a colleague’s exercise of political or civil rights and responsibilities. d. Shall not engage in harassment or discriminatory conduct which unreasonably interferes with an individual’s performance of professional or work responsibilities or with the orderly processes of education or which creates a hostile, intimidating, abusive, offensive, or oppressive environment; and, further, shall make reasonable effort to assure that each individual is protected from such harassment or discrimination.

d. Shall not make malicious or intentionally false statements about a colleague.

Training Requirement All instructional personnel and administrators are required as a condition of employment to complete training on these standards of ethical conduct.

Reporting Misconduct by Instructional Personnel and Administrators All employees and administrators have an obligation to report misconduct by instructional personnel and school administrators which affects the health, safety, or welfare of a student. Examples of misconduct include obscene language, drug and alcohol use, disparaging comments, prejudice or bigotry, sexual innuendo, cheating or testing violations, physical aggression, and accepting or offering favors. Reports of misconduct of employees should be made to your immediate supervisor or an Atala owner.

Reports of misconduct committed by administrators should be made to one of the other Atala owners.

Legally sufficient allegations of misconduct by Florida certified educators will be reported to the Office of Professional Practices Services. Policies and procedures for reporting misconduct by instructional personnel or school administrators which affects the health, safety, or welfare of a student are posted in the office on our central bulletin board and on our Web site at http://atalamontessori.org/employee.

Reporting Child Abuse, Abandonment or Neglect All employees and agents have an affirmative duty to report all actual or suspected cases of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect. Call 1-800-96-ABUSE or report online at: http://www.dcf.state.fl.us/abuse/report/.

Signs of Physical Abuse The child may have unexplained bruises, welts, cuts, or other injuries; broken bones; or burns. A child experiencing physical abuse may seem withdrawn or depressed, seem afraid to go home or may run away, shy away from physical contact, be aggressive, or wear inappropriate clothing to hide injuries.

Signs of Sexual Abuse: The child may have torn, stained or bloody underwear, trouble walking or sitting, pain or itching in genital area, or a sexually transmitted disease. A child experiencing sexual abuse may have unusual knowledge of sex or act seductively, fear a particular person, seem withdrawn or depressed, gain or lose weight suddenly, shy away from physical contact, or run away from home.

Signs of Neglect: The child may have unattended medical needs, little or no supervision at home, poor hygiene, or appear underweight. A child experiencing neglect may be frequently tired or hungry, steal food, or appear overly needy for adult attention.

Patterns of Abuse: Serious abuse usually involves a combination of factors. While a single sign may not be significant, a pattern of physical or behavioral signs is a serious indicator and should be reported. 

Liability Protections Any person, official, or institution participating in good faith in any act authorized or required by law, or reporting in good faith any instance of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect to the department or any law enforcement agency, shall be immune from any civil or criminal liability which might otherwise result by reason of such action. (F.S. 39.203)

An employer who discloses information about a former or current employee to a prospective employer of the former or current employee upon request of the prospective employer or of the former or current employee is immune from civil liability for such disclosure or its consequences unless it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that the information disclosed by the former or current employer was knowingly false or violated any civil right of the former or current employee protected under F.S. Chapter 760. (F.S. 768.095)

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