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Using a Response to Intervention Approach to Address Behavior Concerns. Nebraska RTI Summer Institute July 31, 2007. Presentation Objectives. To describe a three-tier approach to providing behavior support for students

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Using a response to intervention approach to address behavior concerns l.jpg

Using a Response to Intervention Approach to Address Behavior Concerns

Nebraska RTI Summer Institute

July 31, 2007

Presentation objectives l.jpg
Presentation Objectives Behavior Concerns

  • To describe a three-tier approach to providing behavior support for students

  • To highlight examples of an RTI process used to address behavior concerns in Lincoln Public Schools

  • To address factors needed to have successful RTI procedures in place for behavior support

What do we know about rti reading l.jpg
What Do We Know About RTI Reading? Behavior Concerns

  • Tier 1: Core Classroom Instruction

    • Universal screening

    • Strong general education curriculum

    • Designed to prevent more intensive reading problems

  • Tier 2: Supplementary Intervention

    • Student data indicate who gets more intervention

    • Small groups, more intensive instruction

  • Tier 3: Intensive Intervention

    • Student data indicate who gets more intervention

    • Typically individualized, may include verification for special education

What do we know about rti behavior l.jpg
What Do We Know About RTI Behavior? Behavior Concerns

  • Tier 1: Core Classroom Instruction

    • Are we teaching all our students expected behaviors?

    • Do we have a screening process to find students who need more intense behavior support?

  • Tier 2: Supplementary Intervention

    • Are we using data to tell us who needs more intensive behavioral interventions?

    • Can we group students with similar need for behavior instruction?

  • Tier 3: Intensive Intervention

    • Are we using FBA to develop individualized intervention plans?


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Tier 1: Core Curriculum Instruction Behavior Concerns

  • Detentions, suspensions, expulsions DON’T WORK to change behavior in the long term!

  • School-wide Positive Behavior Support (PBS) is a set of strategies and systems to increase the capacity of schools to

    • reduce school disruption

    • educate all students including those with problem behaviors

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Major Ideas in PBS Behavior Concerns

  • Invest in Prevention

  • Teach, monitor, and reward BEFORE punishment

  • Differentiate Systems as Needed

    • Different systems for different challenges

      • School-wide (Primary Prevention)

      • Targeted Group (Secondary Prevention)

      • Intensive Individual (Tertiary Prevention)

  • Implement for Sustainable Effects

  • Evaluate using information for decision-making

Note: Some slides adapted from PBS training materials, University of Oregon Educational and Community Supports.

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Tertiary Prevention Behavior Concerns:



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

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PBS is NOT… Behavior Concerns

  • a specific practice or curriculum…it’s a general approach to preventing problem behavior

  • limited to any particular group of students…it’s for ALL students

  • new…it’s based on a long history of behavioral practices and effective instructional design and strategies

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Invest in Prevention: Behavior ConcernsBuild a Culture of Competence

  • Define behavioral expectations

  • Teach behavioral expectations

  • Monitor and reward appropriate behavior

  • Providecorrective consequences for behavioral errors

  • Information-based problem solving

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Define School-wide Expectations Behavior Concernsfor Social Behavior

  • Identify 3-5 Expectations

  • Short statements

  • Positive Statements (what to do instead of what not to do)

  • 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, Follow directions of adults

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Teach Behavioral Expectations gymnasium.

  • Transform broad school-wide expectations into specific, observable behaviors.

    • Use the Expectations by Settings Matrix

  • Teach in the actual settings where behaviors are to occur

  • Teach (a) the words, and (b) the actions.

  • Build a social culture that is predictable and focused on student success

  • Why teach expectations l.jpg
    Why Teach Expectations? gymnasium.

    • Cannot assume students know how to apply rules in each setting…need to teach behaviors in context!

    • Teaching allows students to practice appropriate behavior and it builds fluency

    • Allows students to see non-examples of expectation

    • Decreases student response “I didn’t know…”

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    On-going Reward of Appropriate Behavior gymnasium.

    • Every faculty and staff member acknowledges appropriate behavior.

      • 5 to 1 ratio of positive to negative contacts

  • System that makes acknowledgement easy and simple for students and staff.

  • Different strategies for acknowledging appropriate behavior

    • Classroom-wide announcements

    • Raffles

    • Open gym

    • Tickets

    • Parking space

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    Discourage and Interrupt Problem Behaviors gymnasium.

    • Do not ignore problem behavior

    • Clear guidelines for what is handled in class versus sent to the office

    • Prevent problem behaviors from being rewarded

    • Do not expect negative consequences to change behavior patterns. Negative consequences are a way to “keep the lid on.” Teaching changes behavior.

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    Information-based Problem Solving gymnasium.

    • Survey staff to define need (Effective Behavior Support Survey)

    • Assessments of PBS implementation (School-wide Evaluation Tool, observations, interviews)

    • Review student data regularly (office discipline referrals and/or other indicators)

    • Other screening tools?

    • Examples of data collection tools at and

    Slide25 l.jpg

    High School in Iowa 02-05 gymnasium.

    2002-03 2003-04 2004-05

    Slide26 l.jpg

    Iowa gymnasium.


    03-04 04-05


    03-04 04-05

    Slide27 l.jpg

    Iowa gymnasium.

    Middle School

    02-03 03-04 04-05

    Middle School

    03-04 04-05

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    Tier 1 in Practice: Lincoln Public Schools gymnasium.

    • Plans for universal screening of behavior

    • PBS in Lincoln Public Schools

    • What is needed to make Tier 1 work?

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    Behavior Support Challenges gymnasium.

    • Resources (time and money) in schools are limited

    • Need to match level of support to level of the student’s behavioral challenges

    • Need an efficient and effective intermediate level intervention system that targets students who are not responding to the school-wide system, but are not in need of individual, intense support

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    The Response: gymnasium.Supplementary Interventions (Tier 2)

    • Targets groups of students who:

      • Fail to respond to school-wide and classroom expectations

      • Are not currently engaging in dangerous or extremely disruptive behavior

    • Efficient - Similar set of behavioral strategies are used across a group of students needing similar levels of support

    • Effective - Decreasing problem behavior in classroom, increasing academic engagement, and decreasing office discipline referrals

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    Steps for Targeted gymnasium.Intervention Support

    • Identify candidates for targeted interventions

    • Identify specific student needs

    • Group students according to similar needs

    • Design and implement intervention support

    • Complete progress monitoring during intervention

    • Monitor integrity of implementation

    • Evaluate the impact of the program

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    Identify Students for gymnasium.Targeted Inventions

    • Identify students for targeted intervention support based upon:

      • Office Referral Data (e.g., 3-5 office referrals)

      • Behavior Incident Reports

      • Teacher Nomination

      • Other screening data

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    Identify Specific Student Needs gymnasium.

    • Identify student needs

      • What skills are they missing?

      • What instruction do they need?

      • What type of reinforcement do they need?

      • What are the effective consequences?

    • Use current student data (office referrals), teacher interviews, student interviews, etc.

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    Group Students gymnasium.According to Need

    • Within the at-risk population, look for small groups of students with similar needs

    • For example, do you have a small group of students who are fighting at recess and need additional instruction on recess behaviors and how to use words instead of fists?

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    Design and Implement Intervention Support gymnasium.

    Identify what instruction will be provided

    • Who will teach

    • How often

    • Required materials

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    Complete Progress Monitoring gymnasium.

    • Identify what data will be collected

    • Identify who will collect the data

    • Identify the baseline level of performance and the goal

    • Identify the decision-making rule

    • Collect progress monitoring data throughout the intervention

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    Monitor Integrity of Implementation gymnasium.

    • Need interventions that are implemented with integrity in order to make decisions about the effectiveness of the intervention

    • Implementation as scheduled

    • Implementation of key components

    • How? - Implementation logs, interviews, observations

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    Evaluate the Impact of the Program gymnasium.

    • Make decisions about individual students

      • Modify, continue, or terminate the intervention

    • Make decisions about the overall effectiveness of the program

      • # or % of students who were successful

      • # or % of decrease in office referrals

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    Tier 2 Progress Monitoring Example gymnasium.

    Grade 2 Social Skills Group

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    Supplemental Interventions gymnasium.

    • Evidence-based Social-Emotional-Learning Programs

      • Blueprints for Violence Prevention (

      • SAMHSA: US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (

      • CASEL: Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (

      • OJJDP: US Department of Education Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (

      • What Works Clearinghouse (

      • SDFS: US Department of Education Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools (

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    Supplemental Interventions gymnasium.

    • Other social skills programs

    • Incentive plans

    • Check-in/Check-out

    • Behavior Report Card

    • Behavior Education Program (BEP)

      Crone, D. A., Horner, R. H., & Hawken, L.. S. (2004). Responding to problem behavior in schools: The Behavior Education Program. New York: Guilford.

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    Tier 3: Intensive Interventions gymnasium.Overview of the Process

    • Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA)

    • Behavior Support Plan

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    Functional Behavioral Assessment gymnasium.

    • Clearly describes the challenging behaviors, including behaviors that go together (A-B-Cs)

    • Identifies the events, times, and situations that maintain the challenging behaviors (attention, escape)

    • Develops one or more summary statements or hypotheses that describes specific behaviors, the types of situations in which they occur, and the reinforcers that maintain the behaviors

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    Functional Behavioral Assessment gymnasium.

    • Collects directly observed data that support summary statements

    • It is a process to understand the structure and function of behavior to TEACH and promote effective alternatives, NOT just to eliminate undesirable behaviors

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    Why an FBA is Important gymnasium.

    • It increases the efficiency and effectiveness of strategies for changing problem behavior

    • It increases your attention to the things that you have control over, that you can alter, to make an impact on the student’s behavior

    • It increases your sense of efficacy in being able to bring about real, important changes for students and staff

    • It leads to the development of Positive Behavioral Support Plans

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    When to Identify the Function gymnasium.

    • Major problem behaviors for individual students

    • School-wide/Class-wide positive support efforts are not working

    • Typical discipline procedures ineffective

    • Behavior intervention plan required for 504 or IEP

    • Ten cumulative days of suspension (manifestation determination for special education students)

    • Standards of best practice recommend the use of FBA within a problem-solving approach

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    Data from an FBA gymnasium.

    • Operational definition of the behavior: What does the behavior look like?

    • Antecedents: How do you know the behavior is going to happen?

    • Setting events: What makes the behavior more likely?

    • Consequences: Why does the behavior keep happening?

    • Function: What is the primary purpose of the behavior?

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    Functions of Behavior gymnasium.

    • Behavior is functional: it serves a purpose

    • All behaviors are motivated by a certain outcome or desire

    • Common functions:

      • Obtain

        • Stimulation

        • Attention

        • Objects

        • Communication

      • Escape or Avoid

        • Pain

        • Attention

        • Difficult Tasks

    • Avoid Colloquial Functions:

    • “Revenge”

    • “Basically Evil”

    • “Control”

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    FBA Methods gymnasium.

    • Indirect information gathering

      • Record review

      • Interviews

      • Rating scales

    • Direct observation

    • Functional analysis

    Information gathering l.jpg
    Information Gathering gymnasium.

    • Interviews with teachers, student, parents

      • Description of behavior

      • Strategies already tried

      • Guess about what motivates behavior

      • How often behaviors occur

      • How long it has been a problem

      • When behaviors occur or do not occur

      • Who is present when behavior occurs

      • Possible skill deficits

      • Events surrounding behavior

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    Information Gathering gymnasium.

    • Direct observation

      • Record instances of behavior

      • Record what happened before the behavior occurred (antecedents)

      • Record what happened after the behavior occurred (consequences)

      • Look for patterns (10-15 instances of behavior)

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    Information Gathering gymnasium.

    • Functional Analysis

      • Control and manipulate variables that may contribute to problem behavior

      • Analyze effects of manipulations

      • For example, vary task length and/or task difficulty and observe impact on work completion

      • Needs to be highly structured and closely monitored

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    Effective Environments gymnasium.

    • Problem behaviors are irrelevant

      • Aversive events are removed

      • Access to positive events are more common

    • Problem behaviors are inefficient

      • Appropriate behavioral alternatives available

      • Appropriate behavioral alternatives are taught

    • Problem behaviors are ineffective

      • Problem behaviors are not rewarded

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    Intervention Planning gymnasium.

    • Prevention (Make problem behaviors irrelevant by managing antecedents and setting events):

      • Schedule

      • Curriculum (content, sequence)

      • Instruction

    • Skill Building (Teach desired behaviors)

      • Teaching = delivering events that change behavior, not just delivering curriculum

      • Replacement behaviors (maintain same function as problem behavior)

      • Adaptive skills

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    Intervention planning (cont.) gymnasium.

    • Manage consequences

      • Prevent reinforcement of problem behavior

      • Increase reinforcement of desired and replacement behaviors

      • Negative consequences

        • The use of socially acceptable punishers may be needed to prevent reward of problem behaviors

        • Do not add negative consequences to the plan until all other components are defined

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    Intervention Planning (cont.) gymnasium.

    • Implementation Plan (Who will do what when?)

      • Schedule meeting times to review

      • Schedule teaching times

      • Plan data collection and display

    • Plan Evaluation (Did it work?)

      • Use data to make decisions

      • Make decision rules when to change intervention

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    Tier 3 Progress Monitoring Example gymnasium.

    Intervention 2

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    Tiers 2 and 3 in Practice: Lincoln Public Schools gymnasium.

    • Interventions being used

    • Progress monitoring methods

    • What is needed to make Tiers 2 & 3 work?

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    Special Education Verification gymnasium.

    • Three questions should be addressed to determine eligibility and need for special education:

      • How does the student’s rate of progress in developing expected skills compare to a certain standard?

      • How does the student’s current level of performance compare to a certain standard?

      • What are the student’s instructional needs in the area of behavior (i.e., curriculum, instruction, accommodations)?

    • An RTI Behavior process can easily address these three questions!

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    Thank you! gymnasium.

    • Questions?

    • Contact Information: