Institute for Global Ethics Education Director Provides Independent School Educators Summer Reading

Paula Mirk offers insight for real-life ethical dilemma in Independent School’s online summer edition for ‘Ethical School’ column
Paula Mirk, Institute for Global Ethics - Director of Education
Paula Mirk, Institute for Global Ethics - Director of Education
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Rockport - Maine - US

July 6, 2012 - PRLog -- ROCKPORT, Maine – In this summer’s Independent School magazine online edition, Paula Mirk, Director of Education and the Ethical Literacy Learning Community at the Institute for Global Ethics (IGE) offers advice on ways to think through a typical ethical dilemma faced by independent school educators. Launched in the summer of 2008, this quarterly column for which Mirk has written on a number of occasions is part of an ongoing series designed to model the decision making required when faced with the tough right-versus-right ethical dilemmas inherent in being a good educator.

While the scenario posed in the publication’s summer issue describes circumstances unique to a boarding school, the dilemma has many layers and is relevant to all educators. The real story told to readers involves an educator who serves as an advisor to a student who was recently elected as student-body president, an honor the student had been dreaming of. The advisor watches the student’s progress over a couple of months and notices a change in behavior. Upon further investigation the advisor uncovers that at the root of the problem might be his parents’ euzox divorce.

Applying parts of IGE’s conceptual frameworks for ethical decision making, Mirk takes readers through the two sides of the advisor’s dilemma. “On the one hand, it’s right for the advisor to insist that the student take a leave of absence and spend time with his family…On the other hand, the student has made it clear that he wants to stay and be part of the school.” As Mirk points out, the dilemma has both short and long-term implications. As the story continues she takes readers through ways the advisor might resolve this dilemma. In closing she provides the real-life outcome to this dilemma. (Mirk’s complete contribution can be found at:

Independent School is the publication of the National Association of Independent Schools ( a membership organization that represents approximately 1,400 independent schools and associations in the United States, and affiliates with independent schools abroad as well.

The IGE’s Ethical Literacy Learning Community provides school community members with tools and processes to build and maintain a culture of integrity based on shared values, ethical decision-making, and research about balancing attention to academic rigor with attention to the ethical development of young people. For more information, please visit or call +1-207-542-1546.

About the IGE
Founded in 1990, with offices in Rockport, Maine, and New York City, the Institute for Global Ethics ( is an independent, nonsectarian, nonpartisan, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting ethical action in a global context. IGE’s challenge is to explore the global common ground of values, elevate awareness of ethics, provide practical tools for making ethical decisions, and encourage practical action based on those decisions.
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