Helping Your Child Succeed Through Positive Behavioral Supports (PBS)

The goal of Positive Behavioral Supports (PBS), also called Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), is to help parents and school staff create and maintain a safe, supportive, learning environment, promote positive life skills, and reduce negative behaviors so that all children can succeed in school. PBS focuses on both individual behavior and environmental factors and has proven more effective than punitive discipline strategies, such as suspension and expulsion. PBS programs can address issues such as bullying prevention, social skills development, resiliency building, and discipline strategies.

What Does PBS Do?
  • Applies behaviorally based approaches to create effective environments in which teaching and learning occur.
  • Focuses on creating and sustaining school-wide, classroom, and individual supports that make problem behavior less rewarding and desired behavior more functionally effective.
  • Establishes a leadership team that guides the implementation of PBS strategies.
  • Develops a set of core behavioral expectations for all students in the school.
  • Engages all school staff, parents, and students in maintaining expectations and employing PBS strategies.
  • Teaches those expectations across all areas of the school.
  • Provides positive reinforcement for meeting expectations.
  • Establishes a hierarchy of consequences as corrective procedures.
  • Collects data on the use of established procedures and the impact of those procedures on behavior.
  • Builds a set of procedures for maintaining PBS strategies school-wide.
A Role for Parents

Parent involvement in all aspects of their child's education is often the key to the child's success. This is particularly true when there are behavioral concerns. Parent communication with the school and participation in school activities can provide academic and behavioral support as well as help develop a healthy school climate.

How can parents help?

  • Work to develop a positive school climate.
  • Participate on the leadership team.
  • Teach your children the importance of school-wide expectations at home, at school, and in the community.
  • Volunteer in school activities.
  • Support with teaching and reinforcement of expectations in home and community settings.
  • Help with school efforts to advertise the program to the community.
  • Work to gather community resources (earn funds, canvas local merchants for participation) for creating and maintaining the program.
  • Take part in the instruction and reinforcement systems if your child is part of a classroom or individual intervention program.
  • Celebrate your child's successes.

Adapted from: "Positive Behavior Supports: Tips for Parents," by Candace Cartwright Dee, PhD, and John Boyle, EdS, NCSP, www.nasponline.org, 2007. The full handout is available online at www.nasponline.org/families.

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