Alison Yin for EdSource

Lawmakers have set aside $10 million in one-time funds to be used during the next three years to train teachers and administrators across the state on how to use more positive approaches to disciplining students.

The funding, which was part of a trailer bill to implement the budget, is for training educators to develop a Multi-Tiered System of Supports — from creating a positive school climate for all students to providing individualized counseling to troubled students. The funding is a response to recommendations from the Statewide Special Education Task Force report, said H.D. Palmer, spokesman for the California Department of Finance. The task force found that students in special education are disproportionately suspended and expelled, and recommended the multi-tiered approach to school discipline.

“I’m thrilled,” said Laura Faer, an attorney with Public Counsel, a public interest law firm that has promoted positive discipline. “There is such a high demand for this training. We can now create a real network statewide that can support our students.”

Heidi Holmblad is executive director of the California Association of School Psychologists, which had supported a bill that would have increased funding for positive disciplinary approaches. She said many schools already have instituted a multi-tiered system, but many others have not.

The new funding “is a way to bring the multi-tiered approach to as many schools as possible to ensure that the reasons for the misbehavior are addressed rather just being punitive,” Holmblad said.

Under a multi-tiered system, schools initially establish a positive climate for all students as a first tier. For example, schools can begin the week with students and the teacher in each classroom forming a circle to discuss what is going on in their lives and at school. Staff, from janitors to the principal, can make an effort to get to know students and greet them by name. Schools also can create clear and simple rules about what behavior is expected at school, such as being respectful and responsible.

Courtesy of www.pbis.org.

Courtesy of www.pbis.or

The second tier would involve interventions with students who are having academic or behavioral problems to teach them more effective ways to get their needs met and to understand the impact of their behavior on others. For example, students who are having problems might meet with a counselor in a small group.

The third-level tier would be individual counseling support for students at high risk of not succeeding at school.

The approach relies heavily on data. For example, if most of the referrals to the principal’s office are coming from one teacher, then an administrator would investigate why and provide the teacher training in alternative methods of disciplining students. Or if most of the problems are happening during lunchtime because of conflicts between 7th- and 8th-graders in a middle school, the administrators might adjust the lunchtime schedule to separate the grades.

The goal is to keep students in school and build a culture that is respectful and supportive of all students, Faer said.

The California Department of Education will choose one or two county offices of education to determine how to allocate the funding to districts. The details have not yet been worked out.

“Competition for the funding is going to be fierce,” Hornblad said. “Our main concern is that it go to lower-cost programs that are quite effective and working in the schools.”

 

 


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  1. Kathy 8 months ago8 months ago

    Obviously, we want kids in school, learning, completing school, going on to be productive citizens in society. But parents need to be held accountable for their child's upbringing/behavior. It shouldn't all fall onto the school staff. School is a place to learn, not a day care, etc. Teachers need to be able to discipline, without fear of repercussions. There needs to be "Zero" tolerance for … Read More

    Obviously, we want kids in school, learning, completing school, going on to be productive citizens in society. But parents need to be held accountable for their child’s upbringing/behavior. It shouldn’t all fall onto the school staff. School is a place to learn, not a day care, etc. Teachers need to be able to discipline, without fear of repercussions.

    There needs to be “Zero” tolerance for certain offenses. Should have 3 strikes you’re out. There should be suspension and expulsion. And parents need to be held accountable too. Quit worrying about the numbers/revenue for kids not in school. Because when they realize that there is no tolerance for inexcusable behavior and the parents have to suffer the consequences too. Then you will have appropriate behavior in class and students will be in class learning and not disrupting other students, which is against the law, I thought, to infringe on other students in the class wanting to learn.
    Also, teachers have so much responsibility with trying to teach and shouldn’t have to spend half the day implementing disciplinary actions. The classrooms are over crowded, 30 plus students per class, that is insane. I have seen all of these examples, even at various age levels.
    Put cameras in the classroom and then you will see what the staff has to put up with and that way the parent can see how their child acts, when they say not my child.

  2. Dr Deb Childs 11 months ago11 months ago

    I am a consultant for the state of Missouri in the area of SWPBS. We have developed standard curriculum and workbooks to provide training to area schools to develop systems, data, and practices for supporting students. If you would like an experienced trainer to work with your district or school in developing this Multi tiered system of support, please contact me at childsde@missouri.edu Read More

    I am a consultant for the state of Missouri in the area of SWPBS. We have developed standard curriculum and workbooks to provide training to area schools to develop systems, data, and practices for supporting students. If you would like an experienced trainer to work with your district or school in developing this Multi tiered system of support, please contact me at childsde@missouri.edu

  3. Richard Cohen 12 months ago12 months ago

    Restorative Schools Vision Project (RSVP) along with other California non-profits have extensive experience supporting school wide implementation of Restorative Justice as the best approach to ending the school-to-prison pipeline. The PBIS approach advocated above has shown an unfortunate tendency to get lost in branding jargon and rubrics that do not produce sustainable positive outcomes for students. Thus, we recommend caution. When love goes out in public it is called "justice" and Restorative Justice is a … Read More

    Restorative Schools Vision Project (RSVP) along with other California non-profits have extensive experience supporting school wide implementation of Restorative Justice as the best approach to ending the school-to-prison pipeline. The PBIS approach advocated above has shown an unfortunate tendency to get lost in branding jargon and rubrics that do not produce sustainable positive outcomes for students. Thus, we recommend caution. When love goes out in public it is called “justice” and Restorative Justice is a heart based, evidence based, healing approach to school discipline. RJ is the natural ally of trauma informed practice, culturally responsive teaching, circle practice, mindfulness, upstander behavior, and separating the person from the problem. It is the approach most consistent with the intellectual values of the Common Core that is being implemented in California schools and thus it is teacher friendly, giving teachers an opportunity to really get to know their students.

  4. Dr Deb Childs 1 year ago1 year ago

    I currently train schools how to develop MTSS for behavior or PBIS for the state of Missouri. I would love to spend more time in California so if anyone wants a trainer, email me at childsde@missouri.edu Read More

    I currently train schools how to develop MTSS for behavior or PBIS for the state of Missouri. I would love to spend more time in California so if anyone wants a trainer, email me at childsde@missouri.edu

  5. Kim 1 year ago1 year ago

    Susan,

    Is this money coming out of the one-time money that districts were already told they were getting? So that it reduces that amount? Similar to the way the Educator Effectiveness Block Grant is working?

    Thanks,
    Kim

    Replies

    • Susan Frey 1 year ago1 year ago

      Thanks for your question Kim. I asked the Department of Finance to clarify. Here is the response: The $10 million has no effect on either the one-time discretionary money or the teacher training money. The $10 million is on top of both of those, and was included in our May Revision Prop 98 package. At May Revision, we were proposing $10m for positive discipline and $3.5b in one-time discretionary funds. The Budget Act retains … Read More

      Thanks for your question Kim. I asked the Department of Finance to clarify. Here is the response:

      The $10 million has no effect on either the one-time discretionary money or the teacher training money. The $10 million is on top of both of those, and was included in our May Revision Prop 98 package.

      At May Revision, we were proposing $10m for positive discipline and $3.5b in one-time discretionary funds.

      The Budget Act retains the $10 million for discipline, adds a $500 million teacher training block grant, and provides $3.2b in one-time discretionary money.

  6. Hillary Wolfe 1 year ago1 year ago

    Our county office has been working to stay in front of MTSS implementations, and ran a successful pilot last year. How can I get more information about the funding from CDE?

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