Code of Conduct
Press Start Academy is committed to the principle of integrity and fair play in the management of the Academy, and in dealings with students and parents. It is important that all staff should uphold a high standard of integrity in dealing with school matters in the interests of the Academy, parents and pupils at all times and ensure their conduct would not bring the Academy into disrepute.
This code sets out the Academy’s policy on the acceptance of advantages by staff in connection with any business of the Academy and the standards of behavior expected from staff.
1. A staff member must:
- Never be alone with a student/s;
- Never touch a student/s, even if the student touches them first;
- Always keep themselves visible to other members of the Academy;
- Avoid intruding on students’ personal space;
- Never seek to proactively contact a student outside of the Academy;
- Never give their personal contact details or other personal information to a student/s;
- Never accept or keep any personal information they may receive about a student/s;
- Never give to or accept from students inappropriate materials, money, gifts or favors;
- Avoid showing favoritism to particular students in any way.
- Be mindful of their language and conduct when on Academy and all other premises where Press Start Academy lessons are conducted, and be aware that language and conduct appropriate in other settings may not be appropriate on premises;
- Not take pictures or videos of a student/s unless a media consent or release form has been signed;
- Never post pictures or videos of a student/s on their personal social media accounts;
- Report hazards or concerns to the person hosting them or other staff in charge. These may include physical hazards, as well as behavior that is disrespectful, harmful or suspicious, whether by students or adults, between students, or between students and adults;
- Report any concerns regarding the welfare of a child or a child protection concern to a Child Protection Officer on premises where Press Start Academy lessons are conducted.
The Prevention of Bribery Ordinance
2. A staff member of the Academy who solicits or accepts an advantage in connection with his work without the permission of the senior leadership of the Academy may commit an offence under Section 9 of the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance (the Ordinance). The term “advantage” is defined in the Ordinance (Annex 1) and includes money, gift, loan, fee, reward, office, employment, contract, service and favor.
3. Staff should not accept or to solicit any advantages from any persons having business dealings with the Academy (e.g. pupils, parents, colleagues, suppliers, contractors and textbook publishers or booksellers, game designers or publishers, curriculum developers), unless otherwise provided for in this code.
4. Permission is given for staff to accept, but not solicit, the following advantages:
- gifts from pupils or parents, provided that the value of the gift does not exceed (HKD100);
- gifts from pupils or parents at graduation ceremonies provided that the aggregate value of the gifts does not exceed (HKD500) on each occasion;
- gifts from parents, colleagues, pupils or former pupils of the Academy on the occasion of retirement or resignation provided that the value of the gift from any one person does not exceed (HKD1,000).
[Note: Figures in brackets are considered realistic and recommended by the Education Bureau for adoption by schools.]
5. If a staff member wishes to accept any advantage not listed above, he must, before or as soon as possible after acceptance, seek the written permission of the senior leadership of the Academy. Permission for any staff to accept an advantage must be given by the senior leadership of the Academy. There is however no restriction on the acceptance of advantages in the staff’s private capacity, unconnected with their school duties, i.e. from a person who has no connection with the School. In case of doubt, the most appropriate action is to seek the advice of the senior leadership of the Academy.
6. Advantages offered in connection with the following activities must not be accepted as the senior leadership of the Academy is unlikely to give permission:
- nomination for courses of training or study-trips, scholarships or other academic awards, involving either teachers or pupils;
- nominations for pupils for admission to other education institutes or universities;
- discount, commissions or gifts by a supplier or contractor to an individual rather than to the Academy;
Conflicts of Interest
7. Staff should avoid engaging in business, investments or activities that might conflict with the Academy’s interest.
8. A conflict of interest arises when a staff member’s loyalty to the Academy conflicts with his/her own financial or personal interests or those of his/her:
- family and other relations;
- personal friends; and
- any person to whom he/she owes a favor or is obligated in any way.
Other Instances in Connection with Interest
9. Staff are not allowed at any time to disclose any confidential information (including student information) to anybody without proper authorization.
10. Falsifying documents and furnishing false accounting records are strictly prohibited. Staff may also be prosecuted for these offences under the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance.
11. Staff should avoid engaging in gambling of any kind with persons having business dealings with the Academy.
12. Any breach of the above code will result in internal disciplinary action (including dismissal) and may, in some circumstances, lead to prosecution under the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance.
13. Any complaints on suspected breaches of this code can be made to the ICAC. They will be treated promptly, fairly and confidentially.