Positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) is a school-wide approach used to promote school safety and good behavior. The focus of PBIS is prevention. Emphasis is placed on teaching and reinforcing essential social skills and data-based problem-solving to address existing behavior concerns.
PBIS is working in thousands of schools across the country and is known to reduce discipline problems and increase time for instruction. When executed well, students achieve improved social and academic outcomes, schools experience reduced discipline issues, and staff feel more effective during instruction.
At the beginning of the school year, staff explicitly teach and post school-wide behavior expectations. Parents receive a letter home stating the behavior expectations at Central Elementary School. With the students, we talk about having Raider PRIDE:
- Positive Words and Actions
- Responsibility for Self
- Integrity and Honor
- Display Self-Control
- Excellence in Everything
The staff commits to teaching what these expectations look like in various building settings, such as the hallway, classroom, cafeteria, restroom, playground, and bus.
A primary component of PBIS is rewarding positive behaviors. Each month at Central Elementary, approximately 40-45 students are recognized at an Awards Assembly by their teachers for demonstrating the specific character trait of the month. This year, the character traits have included respect, kindness, gratitude, sharing, teamwork, empathy, and integrity. Students recognized at the assembly have doughnuts with our Principal, Ron Erpenbach. In addition, each week, all students potentially can have their names drawn for a small prize (such as a pencil or piece of candy) from a “Caught in the Act” drawing on Fridays.
While all this rewarding positive behavior is happening, the PBIS team is also systematically addressing needs and tracking data to ensure we are being as preventative as possible with reteaching expectations and giving students the skills, they need to not only succeed but to thrive.