Official Policies and Teachers’ Tendency to Act: Exploring the Discrepancies in Teachers’ Perceptions


  • Orly Shapira – Lishchinsky Senior lecturer Bar-Ilan University
  • Israel Zvi Gilat Professor of Law in Education Bar-Ilan University



critical ethical incidents, morality of care, morality of justice, official policy, teachers' professional development programs


The aim of the study is to investigate whether there are discrepancies between teachers’ perceptions of the ‘official policies’ and their ‘tendency to act,’ based on their ethical decision-making. A qualitative analysis of 60 Israeli teachers’ questionnaires consisting of critical ethical incidents revealed multifaceted ethical dilemmas nested in categories of ‘discrepancies between official policies and teachers’ tendency to act: ‘Harm (to people, property),’ ‘parental involvement/ interference’ and ‘academic process.’ The discrepancies noted between official policy and teachers’ tendency to act may encourage educational policy to design teachers’ training and professional development programs that include dealing with critical ethical incidents, through team-based simulations and formulating ethical guidelines based on their ethical decision-making process.


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Author Biographies

Orly Shapira – Lishchinsky, Senior lecturer Bar-Ilan University

Orly Shapira - Lishchinsky is a Senior lecturer at the Department of Educational Administration, Leadership and Policy at Bar-Ilan University, Israel.  Her research areas include: organizational ethics, ethical dilemmas in educational systems, teachers’ withdrawal behaviors (lateness, absenteeism and intent to leave) and mentoring through simulation based learning. She was awarded the Emerald/EFMD Outstanding Doctoral Research Award in the Educational Leadership and Strategy category. Her recent publications include articles in: Educational Administration Quarterly, Journal of Educational Administration, Journal of Business Ethics, Educational Management Administration & Leadership, Human Resource Management Review, Teaching and Teacher Education, and Oxford Review of Education.

Israel Zvi Gilat, Professor of Law in Education Bar-Ilan University

Israel Z. Gilat, Rabbi, lawyer, Ph.D. in Law; Adjunct Lecturer at the School of Education, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan, Israel, Associate Professor at the School of Law, Netanya Academic College, Netanya, Israel. Gilat’s research interests include Jewish law, family and inheritance law, social legislation and education law. He is also involved with research on legal aspects of social workers` practice concerning their attitude to the best interest of the child. In 2002-2003 he presided as a Chairperson of a Public Consulting Committee in this matter, appointed by the Israeli Minister of Labour and Welfare Affairs. Gilat has published a book on this topic entitled Family Law – The Relations between Parents and Children (2000)(Heb.) ) and over 40 refereed articles in scientific journals and chapters in scientific books including in Bar Ilan Law Studies; Annual of the Institute for Research in Jewish Law; Justice; Annual of Bar Ilan Universities Studies in Judaica and the Humanities; Mentalities; Gazette du Palais; Studio Paedagogica; Netanya Academic College Law Review; Hamishpat; The Jewish Law Association Studies; Society & Welfare; Jewish Law Annual; Dine’ Israel – An annual in Jewish Law: Past and present; Sinai; Review of Rabbinic Judaism: Ancient, Medieval and Modern.




How to Cite

Shapira – Lishchinsky, O., & Gilat, I. Z. (2015). Official Policies and Teachers’ Tendency to Act: Exploring the Discrepancies in Teachers’ Perceptions. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 23, 82.