• What does PBIS stand for?

    Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports.

    What is PBIS?

    PBIS is best described as systems of support that include proactive strategies for defining, teaching, and supporting appropriate student behaviors to create positive school environments. Instead of using a patchwork of individual behavioral management plans, a continuum of positive behavior support for all students within a school is implemented in areas including the classroom and nonclassroom settings (such as hallways, restrooms). Positive behavior support is an application of a behaviorally based systems approach to enhance the capacity of schools, families, and communities to design effective learning environments. Attention is focused on creating and sustaining primary (school-wide), secondary (classroom), and tertiary (individual) systems of prevention and support that improve lifestyle results (personal, health, social, family, work, recreation) for all children and youth by making problem behavior less effective, efficient, and relevant, and desired behavior more functional.

    What is Primary Prevention?

    Primary prevention involves system-wide efforts to prevent new cases of a condition or disorder. For example, giving children vaccinations against common diseases such as measles and chicken pox is done to prevent initial occurrences of these diseases. As a system-wide Primary Prevention effort in schools, positive behavior support consists of rules, routines, and physical arrangements that are developed and taught by school staff to prevent initial occurrences of problem behavior. For example, to prevent injuries to students caused by running in hallways, schools may develop primary preventions and supports by 1) establishing and teaching the rule, “walk in the hallways;” 2) creating a routine in which staff station themselves in the hallways during transition times to supervise the movement of pupils; or 3) altering the physical arrangement, such as making sure that an adult is with any group of students when they are in the hallways.

    What is Secondary Prevention?

    Secondary prevention is designed to provide intensive or targeted interventions to support students who are not responding to primary prevention efforts. Common secondary prevention practices involve small groups of students or simple individualized intervention strategies. Secondary prevention is designed for students who are at risk of chronic problem behavior, but for whom high intensity interventions are not essential. Secondary prevention often involves targeted group interventions with ten or more students participating. Targeted interventions also are recommended as an approach for identifying students in need of more intensive, individualized interventions. Specific secondary prevention interventions may include practices such as “social skills club,” “check in/check out” and individual positive behavior support plans. Individual plans at the secondary prevention level involve a simple assessment to identify the function a problem behavior serves and individualized, assessment-based intervention strategies that can include a range of options such as: (1) teaching the student to use new skills as a replacement for problem behaviors, (2) rearranging the environment so that problems can be prevented and desirable behaviors can be encouraged, and (3) monitoring, evaluating, and reassessing this simple plan over time.

    What is Tertiary Prevention?

    Tertiary prevention efforts are designed to focus on the needs of individuals who exhibit patterns of problem behavior. Tertiary Prevention is most effective when there are positive primary (school-wide) and secondary (classroom) systems in place. The design and implementation of individualized supports should include the individual with behavioral challenges and people who know him/her best all working together to promote positive change. The goal of tertiary prevention is to diminish problem behavior and, also, to increase the student's adaptive skills and opportunities for an enhanced quality of life.

    Why is it so important to focus on teaching positive social behaviors?

    In the past, school-wide discipline has focused mainly on reacting to specific student misbehavior by implementing punishment-based strategies including reprimands, loss of privileges, office referrals, suspensions, and expulsions. Research has shown that the implementation of punishment, especially when it is used inconsistently and in the absence of other positive strategies, is ineffective. Introducing, modeling, and reinforcing positive social behavior is an important element in a student’s educational experience. Teaching behavioral expectations and rewarding students for following them is a much more positive approach than waiting for misbehavior to occur before responding. The purpose of school-wide PBIS is to establish a climate in which appropriate behavior is the norm.

    What are the components of a comprehensive school-wide system of discipline or positive behavioral interventions and supports?

    All effective school-wide systems have seven major components in common a) an agreed upon and common approach to discipline, b) a positive statement of purpose, c) a small number of positively stated expectations for all students and staff, d) procedures for teaching these expectations to students, e) a continuum of procedures for encouraging displays and maintenance of these expectations, f) a continuum of procedures for discouraging displays of rule-violating behavior, and g) procedures for monitoring and evaluation the effectiveness of the discipline system on a regular and frequent basis.

    Which District 742 schools are currently involved in PBIS?

    All District 742 schools are involved in various levels of PBIS implementation and sustainability.

    Each of the District 742 sites involved are at different points along the continuum in implementing PBIS and establishing the seven components listed above. Each site has a leadership team. A district implementation team has also been formed and provides support to the building teams, which includes coaching, data collection and dissemination, and training.

    How is District 742 supporting this effort?

    PBIS in District 742 is supported by federal Early Intervention funds. These funds support staff training and team planning time during the school year and summers to promote PBIS implementation at the building level.

    Who can I contact if I have more questions about PBIS in District 742?

    Mike Mathiason, Social Emotional Learning Coordinator, 320-370-8077.