There you are with your clean desk, sharpened pencils, empty inbox of emails and you think you are all set to rock this school year as the newly designated Behavior Coordinator for your campus. Most of you are probably an Assistant Principal too, and grappling with all the responsibilities that come with that job. But you’re not worried, you got this! Your plan is to handle each issue right as you get it, so you don’t get behind in your paperwork. You have the code of conduct and your discipline matrix on the corner of your desk to grab at a moment’s notice. Now, you just need to help your PBIS team present the expectations, common area rules, reward system, and discipline system to the students and start building relationships with the 1500 kiddos in your school.
Teamwork is important. We all do better work when we’ve got a great team supporting us. As we’ve mentioned before, Positive Behavior Interventions and Support, or PBIS, involves the whole campus. To successfully implement PBIS on your campus, you’re going to need a stellar team. So, what does a PBIS team look like?
To build an ideal PBIS team, it’s important to represent all aspects of your community. Think about who represents your school and invite them into the PBIS Team. Teachers, both general and special education, interventionists, elective teachers, parents, office staff, cafeteria works, maintenance workers; all are part of your campus staff and all can have a strong voice on your PBIS Team.
If you’ve been in education for any amount of time, you’ve likely heard the words “Social Emotional Learning” before. It’s not a new concept, Social Emotional Learning (or SEL for short), has been around for years, but has just recently started to gain respect, attention, and importance in the world of education.
SEL, as defined by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional, Learning is “the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”
That’s a mouthful, but it contains a lot of really useful information. In a nutshell, SEL is all about understanding how people grow and learn socially and emotionally by looking at the daily interactions and experiences that influence their emotions, behavior, and thereby affect their choices.
By Janice Burch
All of us know that dealing with behavior issues can be more difficult than dealing with academic issues. With academic struggles, we usually have a clear understanding of what the student can and can’t do, and what skills and strategies we need to teach them. We can also monitor academic progress much easier than we can monitor behavior issues. Behavior management isn’t as black and white as academics; there are shades of gray when it comes to emotions, relationships, and feelings.
I never realized how much I was interested in the kids that really seemed to struggle in a school setting. They always had a hard time just going with the flow and behaving like the other kids. In my mind, everything seemed like a battle of wills, and I started to wonder if they woke up every morning and planned out how to be more disruptive and disrespectful than the day before. Honestly, I’m not sure when it exactly started, but I found myself very intrigued by these tough kids.