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Teachers' views of forgiveness for the resolution of conflicts between students in school

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This study investigated teachers' views of forgiveness and institutional pardon for conflict resolution at schools. We asked, "Should teachers endorse student resolution of interpersonal conflicts at school by asking for forgiveness and forgiving?" "Considering that students' conflict led to behaviours that violated norms in the school, should schools pardon students' misconduct if students effectively used forgiveness for interpersonal conflict resolution?" Finally, "Is an internal and autonomous orientation for forgiveness related to social harmony or interpersonal ethics of care?" Fifty-three participants answered a background information questionnaire and two dilemmas. Findings showed that teachers endorse forgiveness as social expectation, a humanitarian, moral response to conflicts at conventional levels. Teachers do not endorse institutional pardon because they do not perceive forgiveness as being related to resolving social issues. Opposition to forgiveness and pardon was supported by authoritarian, discipli narian views of education.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Northern Illinois University, USA DePaul University, Chicago, USA

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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