Positive Behavior Support and Community
Community Support is vital to the sustainability of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. Local resources such as: 1) political support, 2) business investment, and 3) media coverage are crucial to self-sustaining capacity building within each district.
Education is a vital cog to any community. Quality education creates high caliber employees, college students, supporters, and consumers. The support of PBIS by any community's political leaders ensures the continued ability of the school to decrease office discipline referrals; which gives educators a classroom atmosphere where learning is the number one activity.
As the graphic above indicates, Political support is one the three key components to ensure the district leadership teams have the support necessary to train, coach, and evaluate the local schools for continued success.
How does a school achieve political support for Sw-PBIS? Invite politicians to school events. Have student PBIS team leaders walk the politician around the school pointing out the 3-5 behavioral expectations, the matrix of behavioral teaching examples, the gotcha program, and discuss how each behavior was taught to the entire school. Have the students talk about what a difference Sw-PBIS has meant to them.
Keeping politicians informed assists with legislature like the "Positive Behavior for Effective Schools Act" in the US Senate (S.2111), which is companion legislation to H.R.3407. S.2111 Title: A bill to amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to allow State educational agencies, local educational agencies, and schools to increase implementation of early intervention services, particularly school-wide positive behavior supports.
Business support can provide the impetus for parental involvement and political support by bestowing schools with recognition in many ways. Here are a few ideas utilized by some current Sw-PBIS schools:
- Celebration night at a local restuarant for all students who received 35 gotchas in a month. Students bring in gotcha tickets and family receives one entree free. (A gotcha is a ticket for caught being good.)
- Grocery store chooses one student per week from gotcha drawing to serve as an apprentice on Saturday at the grocery store.
- Car oil change company gives out letters for the school to send out to exemplar students giving the parents 15% off their next oil change.
- Art fair night hosted by local restaurants who serve samples of their food to visitors. The highlighted artists are students who earned a certain number of gotchas in a given period.
- Discount cards donated by restaurants, book stores, discount stores, grocery stores, etc. earned for receiving a predetermined number of gotchas.
- Teacher supply store, discount store, and book store discounts or gift certificates for educator motivation prizes for giving out the most gotcha tickets.
How can schools procure business support? Invite business owners to visit the schools, visit the Rotary Club and talk about success stories in the schools, invite businesses to the Sw-PBIS stakeholder group, and when visiting the business mention the program and ask for support.
Positive media coverage can assist political, parental, business and community support. A press release template is available in Microsoft Word and can be used to notify newspapers, television, and radio stations for coverage of Sw-PBIS events. Make media coverage a responsibility of one of the PBIS leadership team members. Local media stations have fax lines available for press releases.
Here are some examples from other schools who have used media coverage to highlight their successes: