Throughout this school year each Worthington School is creating a Positive Behavior Interventions and Support plan. A team of teachers, along with the principal of each school, will attend training at the Educational Service Center Central Ohio and will then work together to implement PBIS in their school.
On January 15, 2013, the Ohio State Board of Education approved the policy on Positive Behavior Interventions and Support (PBIS) and Restraint and Seclusion. On April 9, 2013, the State Board of Education approved Rule 3301-35-15, Standards for the implementation of positive behavior intervention supports and the use of restraint and seclusion.
PBIS.org explains PBIS in a concise way: “One of the foremost advances in school-wide discipline is the emphasis on school-wide systems of support that include proactive strategies for defining, teaching, and supporting appropriate student behaviors to create positive school environments. Instead of using a piecemeal approach 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 non-classroom settings (such as hallways, buses, and 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 environments that improve the link between research-validated practices and the environments in which teaching and learning occurs. Attention is focused on creating and sustaining primary (school-wide), secondary (classroom), and tertiary (individual) systems of support that improve lifestyle results (personal, health, social, family, work, recreation) for all children and youth by making targeted behaviors less effective, efficient, and relevant, and desired behavior more functional.
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 step of 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.” (OK, so it wasn’t really concise, but this is complicated stuff!!!)
As a result of PBIS, Worthington students and parents will begin to hear a common language used throughout our schools. Students will define appropriate behaviors for common spaces as well as for their classrooms. Colonial Hills Elementary has led the way in this initiative and their “Cougar Pride” PBIS plan is a model that many of our other schools will look to and build upon.
Providing supports for all of our students to ensure success means we need to do some things in new ways. This year across Worthington we’re looking to make certain positive behavior supports are in place in all schools.