A critical component of a safe school environment is the establishment of clear guidelines for student behavior. An effective system is one in which all students know and can explain the school's expectations for behavior, as well as consequences for violating expectations.
Behavior management programs are effective in decreasing suspension, expulsion, and dropout rates, reducing teacher burnout, and improving student on-task behavior and academic achievement. It is not only students with problem behaviors, but all students can benefit from the use of consistent positive behavior interventions and supports. Creating a positive school climate requires the promotion of programs that clarify and communicate positive behavior through consistent enforcement of school rules. Proactive and positive school-wide discipline systems create environments in which learning and teaching are valued, aggressive and unsafe behavior are discouraged and respect responsibility, cooperation and other highly valued character traits are taught and encouraged. Comprehensive Three Level Approach
An effective system requires a continuum of supports comprised of three very different levels of intervention. This three-stage model focuses on prevention, early intervention, and intensive services to address the behavioral or academic problems of students. The Three-Tier Model of Instruction in Mississippi
On January 21, 2004, the Mississippi Board of Education adopted the Three-Tier Model of Instruction. The Three-Tier Model of Instruction is a systematic approach for providing student interventions. The model identifies struggling students before they fall behind and provides them with support throughout the educational process of schooling. The model has three levels or “tiers” of instruction:
- Tier I is effective classroom instruction. It includes strategies put in place school-wide to reduce the development and occurrences of new problem behavior by teaching and encouraging expected pro-social behavior among all students, across all school settings and by all staff members.
- Tier II is supplemental instruction. It targets students who are considered at-risk for problem behavior and/or academic skill deficits who are not responding to primary level prevention efforts.
- Tier III is instruction for intensive intervention. Interventions are developed specifically to address the behavior support needs of the smallest proportion of students (about 5 percent) who display chronic academic and/or behavioral difficulties. These behaviors impede learning, are dangerous or disruptive behavior, and/or result in social or educational exclusion. Even though this group is only 1-7% of a school’s population, they account for 40% to 50% of behavioral disruptions.