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Sustaining School-wide Positive Behavior Support. Rob Horner University of Oregon OSEP TA Center on Positive Behavior Support Goals. Current status of SWPBS What we are learning about sustaining SWPBS over time Linking Behavior Support and Academic Supports.

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sustaining school wide positive behavior support

Sustaining School-wide Positive Behavior Support

Rob Horner

University of Oregon

OSEP TA Center on Positive Behavior Support

  • Current status of SWPBS
  • What we are learning about sustaining SWPBS over time
  • Linking Behavior Support and Academic Supports.
  • ** Updates on current research**
what is school wide positive behavior support
What isSchool-wide Positive Behavior Support?
  • School-wide PBS is:
      • A systems approach for establishing the social culture and individualized behavioral supports needed for schools to be effective learning environments for all students.
  • Evidence-based features of SW-PBS
      • Prevention
      • Define and teach positive social expectations
      • Acknowledge positive behavior
      • Continuum of consistent consequences for problem behavior
      • On-going collection and use of data for decision-making
      • Continuum of intensive, individual interventions.
      • Administrative leadership – Team-based implementation (Systems that support effective practices)
establishing a social culture
Establishing a Social Culture

Common Language


Common Experience

Common Vision/Values

school wide systems all students all settings all times
School-wide Systems(All students all settings all times)

Create a positive school culture:

School environment is predictable

1. common language

2. common vision (understanding of expectations)

3. common experience (everyone knows)

School environment is positive

regular recognition for positive behavior

School environment is safe

violent and disruptive behavior is not tolerated

School environment is consistent

adults use similar expectations.

four basic recommendations
Four Basic Recommendations:
  • Never stop doing what is already working
  • Always look for the smallest change that will produce the largest effect
      • Avoid defining a large number of goals
      • Do a small number of things well
  • Do not add something new without also defining what you will stop doing to make the addition possible.
  • Collect and use data for decision-making
three important themes
Three Important Themes
  • Create systems, not just programs, to support each and all students
  • Earlier rather than later
  • Evidence, not opinion
define school wide expectations for social behavior
Define School-wide Expectationsfor Social Behavior
  • Identify 3-5 Expectations
  • Short statements
  • Positive Statements (what to do, not what to avoid doing)
  • Memorable
  • Examples:
      • Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be Safe, Be Kind, Be a Friend, Be-there-be-ready, Hands and feet to self, Respect self, others, property, Do your best, Follow directions of adults

Tertiary Prevention:



Systems for Students with High-Risk Behavior





Secondary Prevention:

Specialized Group

Systems for Students with At-Risk Behavior


Primary Prevention:


Wide Systems for

All Students,

Staff, & Settings


~80% of Students


current status
Current Status
  • Nationally
    • 5800 schools implementing SWPBS
    • Evidence-based practice
    • Behavior support linked to academic gains
  • In North Carolina
    • 500+ schools


sustain swpbs by making it
Sustain SWPBS by making it
  • Easier to do each year.
  • Effective for all students
  • Available to everyone in the school
  • Adaptive to change over time
  • Publicly accountable
  • Invest in continuous regeneration

Jennifer Doolittle





Action Planning

Collection and use

of data for


Sustained Use of SW-PBS




Job Descrip



Lesson Plans


BSP tools


Letters to






Beh Spec

Data System



Cultural Core

Link to comm

Home link



Stud Train

Team Devel

Reward Sys






Horner & Sugai, 2005..32

make sw pbs easier to do
Make SW-PBSEasier to do
  • Handbook
      • Description of SW-PBS core ideas
      • School-wide Behavioral Expectations
      • Teaching matrix
      • Teaching plans and teaching schedule
      • Reward system
      • Continuum of consequences for problem behavior
  • Teaming System
      • Regular meeting schedule and process
      • Regular schedule for annual planning/training
  • Annual Calendar of Activities
  • On-going coaching support
make sw pbs effective for all implement to full criterion
Make SW-PBS Effective for all:Implement to full criterion.
  • School-wide
  • Targeted
  • Intensive Individual (wrap around)
    • Build capacity for access to behavioral expertise


Document impact of SW-PBS on student outcomes

  • Clarify expectations at district, regional, state level.


make sw pbs adaptive to change
Make SW-PBS Adaptive to change
  • Collection and use of data for decision-making
      • Are we implementing SW-PBS?
          • Team Checklist; EBS Survey; SET; Benchmarks of Quality
      • Are students benefiting behaviorally?
          • SWIS (ODR, Suspensions, Referrals to SPED)
      • Do students perceive the school as safe?
          • School Safety Survey
      • Are students benefiting academically?
          • Standardized tests
  • Satisfaction
      • Students
      • Staff
      • Families

Student Satisfaction


make sw pbs efforts public
Make SW-PBS efforts Public
  • Newsletter to families
  • Regular reports to faculty/staff
  • Formal system for reporting to school board or district
  • Information to community at large
      • Websites


some lessons
Some Lessons
  • Plan for sustained implementation & expansion early & formally
  • Invest in & adapt evidence-based practices to local context
  • Give priority to relevant, measurable outcomes
  • Treatschool as basic unit for change, & districts/states as main organizational units providing support.
  • Establish demonstrations & data to enhance understanding
  • Invest early in local implementation capacity
  • Emphasizecontinuous regeneration for efficacy, relevance, priority, & fidelity
  • Positively reinforce successive approximations of implementer behavior
next steps
Next Steps
  • Take 10 min as a team…
    • Identify ONE action that may be most helpful in improving the sustainability of your SWPBS efforts.
moving swpbs forward
Moving SWPBS Forward
  • Linking Behavioral and Academic outcomes
  • Attending to whole-school culture
  • Improving support for students with most intense needs.
  • SWPBS is growing in North Carolina
  • When implemented at criterion
    • Reductions in problem behavior
    • Reductions in out of school suspensions
    • Increases in academic gains
      • (when delivered in combination with effective literacy instruction)
  • Current needs:
    • Improve/expand
    • Sustainability