As schools struggle to manage teacher turnover, increasing student behavioral and emotional needs, and a host of other issues, effective behavioral support has never been so important.
The positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) model offers impactful change for a better, more motivating school environment. This evidence-based system helps teachers effectively manage behavioral issues and creates a more positive classroom experience that leads to more engaged students and teachers. In addition, PBIS reduces bullying and lowers the rates of disciplinary actions like detentions and suspensions.
PBIS can improve the outcomes for everyone at a school, but it requires involvement from all levels to be truly successful. Administrators need to utilize strong leadership to encourage buy-in from teachers. They can facilitate an effective program rollout by offering teachers resources, encouragement, data, and ongoing support throughout the implementation of a new plan.
With careful consideration of all parties involved and a network of support, administrators can foster a better school environment for everyone.
For help on how to get started, check out our free PBIS teacher buy-in guide.
Why administrators need to generate teacher buy-in for PBIS in schools
Not sure why you need to convince your teachers to invest in a new PBIS initiative? Below are four reasons why PBIS needs teacher involvement to reach its maximum potential.
1. PBIS helps improve teacher retention
According to research, 50% of teachers have ‘seriously’ considered changing professions. Behavior management is one of the primary causes of teacher burnout, and the burden on teachers has only increased due to COVID-19. Retaining dedicated, motivated, and effective teachers is increasingly difficult for many schools. Implementing a successful PBIS strategy can help give overwhelmed teachers a much-needed boost in morale, support, and resources.
2. PBIS success starts in the classroom
PBIS is a cultural shift that goes far beyond any educational trend. Building truly impactful and lasting change on that level requires PBIS buy-in from teachers. Teachers are more directly involved with students on a regular basis. They can offer feedback on program progress and note which students might need additional support. While implementing a schoolwide PBIS strategy begins with strong leadership, success from the program starts in the classroom.
3. Teacher buy-in creates a consistent and uniform PBIS rollout
By generating PBIS buy-in from teachers, you can ensure that everyone shares the same expectations and works toward the same goals. This consistency generates faster adoption of your PBIS structure. Teachers, staff, and administrators are aligned in addressing setbacks or challenges, there are clearer lines of communication and fewer instances of conflicting information, and students adopt positive behaviors more quickly because expectations are clear.
4. Teachers can help tailor the program to students and provide valuable feedback
When you generate teacher buy-in for your PBIS plan, you invest in a valuable partnership. Teachers can offer insights on existing issues and pain points that help target the PBIS program to where it is most needed. They can also help to conduct surveys and collect other data to aid in tracking progress throughout the year. When reviewing PBIS metrics, teachers can also give an additional analysis of the data to improve future PBIS efforts.
Why administrators and teachers should implement PBIS
PBIS isn’t a recent trend that might disappear into history tomorrow. Classrooms have used PBIS for over 25 years and there are years of data to support its efficacy and positive impact. PBIS is a cultural shift in how educators use data to create more positive and successful learning environments.
The PBIS shift towards restorative practices, inclusion, and social and emotional development helps both students and educators. Everyone benefits when a school can implement a PBIS structure with teacher buy-in.
How does PBIS benefit teachers?
It saves teachers time on behavioral management paperwork
When behaviors improve under a successful PBIS plan, teachers spend less time completing paperwork relating to behavioral management issues. Administrators can maximize this benefit by conducting an audit of current processes with teachers. This gives both parties a chance to identify current pain points or burdens and alleviate them with the new PBIS plan.
It reduces teacher burnout
As mentioned earlier, teacher retention is a big issue for many administrators. Implementing a PBIS program with teacher buy-in can improve the work environment for educators. PBIS helps teachers feel:
- More connected to their students
- Less emotionally exhausted
- Stronger connections to their work in general
It improves student participation and engagement
When students feel a stronger sense of connection to their teachers and their peers, they’re more likely to participate in class. The PBIS model helps teachers by giving them effective strategies to engage with students and facilitate connections with one another.
It increases learning times in the classroom
Instead of relying on exclusionary measures like detentions or suspensions to address negative behaviors, the PBIS model uses restorative practices. This shift allows students to remain in the classroom whenever possible and gives teachers fewer disruptions and more time with all of their students.
How does PBIS benefit schools and administrators?
PBIS pays big dividends for students, educators, and schools in general. A successful PBIS plan helps schools with a number of benefits including:
- Reduced rates of behavioral referrals, detentions, and suspensions
- Fewer bullying incidents
- Better social-emotional development
- Lower rates of illegal drug and alcohol use
- Improved school environment and safety
- Reduced discipline rates for students with disabilities
- Enhanced learning performance
Get Your Free PBIS Guide
When already facing numerous challenges in returning to the classroom after COVID-19, teachers and their students need continued support from administrators. A PBIS plan creates that system but requires teacher buy-in to be truly successful. By engaging with teachers and generating that buy-in, administrators can develop an impactful and sustainable PBIS initiative.
Photo Credit: Google Education