Ethical Dilemma in Teaching Math

The case study presents the situation of a young boy named Danny who is struggling with classwork. Ms. Rodriquez, Danny’s teacher, values the role played by discipline and the involvement of family members in a child’s education. She discovers Danny is experiencing a challenge in handling mathematics and assumes that this could be due to poor time management or disregard for the child’s needs by the parent.

The main issue in the case study is the discussion of how Danny could be assisted in his math subject challenge, especially with multiplication. Ms. Rodrigues called Danny’s mother to develop strategies that would enable him to deal with the memory difficulties in multiplication exercises. Ms. Rodrigues wanted to understand why Danny’s mother rarely signed Danny’s Agenda, as she thought they were not concerned about their son’s learning. Ms. Rodrigues believed that a parent is a child’s first teacher and plays a significant role in their children’s learning process. In the process, she realized that Danny had a disabled brother who required greater attention and that Danny’s mother did not have adequate time to sign his Agenda every night. The teacher learned that Ms. Tang was not in a better position to execute the proposed alternative ways to assist Danny in her mathematics problem. Ms. Rodrigues had to decide whether Tang would focus on the educational needs of Danny or his disabled brother.

The ethical consideration in the case study is the development of the best strategies that can be used to assist Danny in his math problem. Ms. Rodrigues believed disciplining Danny would make him complete work and do additional practice to ensure that he would become familiar with multiplication (Anwar & Nawaz, 2021). Another ethical consideration in the scenario is the proposition that Ms. Tang should undertake a time management course online. In addition, the suggestion of being part of a parent involvement workshop every Wednesday night was an ethical consideration. Such strategies cover aspects like informed consent, voluntary participation, access to only relevant issues, and critical issues in the case study.

Considering the situation, Ms. Rodrigues would have offered to assist Danny individually because her mother was already experiencing several difficulties. Such a response would be better since it would give Danny’s mother time to provide for the family’s basic needs and be better positioned to focus on providing the best services to his disabled son (Anwar & Nawaz, 2021). As a single mother with a disabled son, Ms. Tang was already going through a lot and, therefore, adding more tasks to her in the name of parent involvement in their child’s education was unethical.

To solve the challenge, Ms. Rodrigues would have offered alternative responses that would enable solve Danny’s learning problems at school and provide strategies to improve his performance. Such strategies entail methods like the development of after-school time coaching and teaching to get more time to interact with the students and get additional teaching time (Feeney & Kipnis, 2011). Another proposition would be the development of a teacher-parent partnership that would enable the delegation of responsibility for helping Danny (Morena, 2022). Ms. Rodrigues should also have proposed therapy and counseling to the student for effective behavioral modification.

All the proposed responses would significantly enhance the student’s understanding of mathematics and multiplication. A therapist can assist Danny in learning and overcome difficulties in multiplication by devising great methods to practice challenging concepts (Feeney et al., 2019). Among the three alternative responses, the therapy proposition is the best since it would enhance Danny’s level of understanding and enable him to deal with the challenges they faced at home.

In conclusion, handling an ethical dilemma requires adequate consideration of the consequences of the directions that will be taken. Danny’s mother has several responsibilities; hence the best option is to engage a therapist to help Danny solve the math difficulties or even delegate responsibility to the teacher. The action will allow the family to focus on other issues, such as helping Danny’s brother, who has a condition that demands special attention.


Anwar, S., & Nawaz, D. M. (2021). A study of the effect of teachers’ behavior on students’ academic achievement at the secondary school level. Elementary Education Online, 20(2), 1273-1273. Web.

Feeney, S., Freeman, N. K., & Schaffer, K. (2019). Gender expression and identity. YC Young Children, 74(5), 84-93.

Feeney, S., & Kipnis, K. (2011). NAEYC code of ethical conduct and statement of commitment. Young Children, 45(1), 1-9.

Morena, M. (2022). Possible solutions to challenges of including learners with special educational needs in mainstream classrooms. International Journal of Multidisciplinary Research and Analysis, 05(03).

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ChalkyPapers. "Ethical Dilemma in Teaching Math." May 19, 2023.