This week ASV hosted Dr. George Sugai, professor at the University of Connecticut and one of the most preeminent scholars, researchers and trainers in the field of PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention and Support. Dr. Sugai is helping ASV develop its own PBIS Team and Program. “We are spending two days working with the school leaders, and also made up a team of teachers and administrators to implement these structures and these practices,” he commented before offering a talk to all of the school staff on Wednesday afternoon. “It is a wonderful place to be because of you have a very cohesive staff and students who all know why they’re here. And they are very excited about enhancing what they are doing most that replacing what they are doing”, he highlighted as a conclusion of his time at ASV
PBIS is an internationally-used preventative and responsive approach to positively support classroom, small groups and individual students to decrease disruptions, increase instructional time, and improve student social behavior and academic outcomes. “One thing we have learned is that when children are learning in respectful spaces and respect behaviour is displayed, the academic achievement also goes up,” Dr. Sugai pointed out when being asked about the main goal of the PBIS program.
As co-director of the Center of Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports, Sugai has an excellent knowledge of the success of PBIS as educational tool in the United States and abroad: “In the United States we have about 24,000 schools that have implemented PBIS. We also have about 20 or so different countries in the world that have implemented what we call a framework approach to build positive cultures. The core features are the same: promoting social skills, creating a safe environment, merging academic instruction with social skills instructions… What is different is maybe the language, maybe the values of a given culture.
(Update on December 15: Learn more about PBIS with this interview)