What is PBIS?

Last Updated: 4/16/2019 4:02 PM

Arnett Elementary PBIS School Wide Expectations - Be Safe. Be Respectful. Be Responsible. 

Hands, feet, and objects to self. Walk in line, facing forward. Keep your area clean and pick up after yourself. Voice Level 2, use café manners. 

Computer Lab:
Hands to self and on your own computer/device. Access safe sites and respect yourself and equipment. 

Model "quiet" using listening ears and watching eyes. Your brain is thinking. Respect yourself, others, and equipment. 

Hands, feet, and objects to yourself. Walking forward, in the second block, on the right side of the hallway. Voice level 0. 

Media Center/Library:
Hands, feet, objects to yourself. Be kind to books, materials, and all working materials. Return books and materials on time. Voice level 0 or 1. 

Hands to self and stay in your designated or appropriate area. Voice level 1. 

Play safely, fair, and nice. Respect the playground, yourself, and others. 

Go, flush, wash, leave. Hands, feet, and objects to self. Respect the privacy of others in the restroom. 


What is PBIS?

"PBIS" is short for Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports. This language comes directly from the 1997 reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

PBIS is based on principles of applied behavior analysis and the prevention approach and values of positive behavior support.

PBIS is a framework or approach for assisting school personnel in adopting and organizing evidence-based behavioral interventions into an integrated continuum that enhances academic and social behavior outcomes for all students.
PBIS IS NOT a packaged curriculum, scripted intervention, or manualized strategy.
PBIS IS a prevention-oriented way for school personnel to (a) organize evidence-based practices, (b) improve their implementation of those practices, and (c) maximize academic and social behavior outcomes for students.
PBIS supports the success of ALLstudents.

What does PBIS have to do with school discipline and classroom management?
Effective classroom management and preventive school discipline are essential for supporting teaching and learning.

PBIS goes further by emphasizing that classroom management and preventive school discipline must be integrated and working together with effective academic instruction in a positive and safe school climate to maximize success for all students.

How is PBIS related to "Response-to-Intervention" (RtI)?
The logic, tenets, and principles of PBIS are the same as those represented in RtI (e.g., universal screening, continuous progress monitoring, data-based decision making, implementation fidelity, evidence-based interventions).

Literacy and numeracy implementation frameworks are examples of the application of RtI for academic behavior, and PBIS is an example of the application of RtI for social behavior.

How does PBIS respond to the use of punishment (e.g., detention, timeout, verbal reprimands), especially for students with serious problem behavior?
Although PBIS has no specific restrictions on the use of consequence-based strategies designed to reduce serious problem behavior, teaching-oriented, positive, and preventive strategies are emphasized for all students, to the greatest extent possible. The emphasis is on the use of the most effective and most positive approach to addressing even the most severe problem behaviors.

Most students will succeed when a positive school culture is promoted, informative corrective feedback is provided, academic success is maximized, and use of prosocial skills is acknowledged.
When student problem behavior is unresponsive to preventive school-wide and classroom-wide procedures, information about the student's behavior is used to (a) understand why the problem behavior is occurring (function); (b) strengthen more acceptable alternative behaviors (social skills); (c) remove antecedents and consequences that trigger and maintain problem behavior, respectively; and (d) add antecedents and consequences that trigger and maintain acceptable alternative behaviors.


Here is our Arnett Elementary Flow Chart for Office Managed and Classroom Managed Behaviors: 



Definitions and Examples of Behavior





Major Defiance – Disrupts Learning of Class

Refusal to follow adult directions after several redirections

A student repeated refusal to follow procedural directions or to do an assignment

Sustained Behavior that Disrupts Class

Behavior causing an interruption in a class or activity.

Sustained loud talk, yelling, or screaming, noise with materials; horseplay or roughhousing, sustained out-of-seat behavior

Fighting/Aggressive Behavior

When two or more persons mutually participate in use of force or physical violence that requires physical restraint or results in injury.

Hitting, punching, hitting with an object, kicking, hair pulling, scratching, etc. between two individuals ex: fist fight, chick fight, fight club, spontaneous fight.

Malicious Behavior/Harassment

Being purposely and repeatedly bothering someone else

Name calling, racial slurs, and offensive conversations

Blatant Disrespect / Insubordination

Talking back and/or socially, rude interactions overtly directed at an adult.

Repeated belligerent / defiant response and refusal to follow directions.

Repeated Dishonesty

Not telling the truth, making up excuses, or blaming others


Threatening / Harassment

Student delivers higher-intensity disrespectful messages to another person that may include negative comments, obscene gestures, pictures, or written notes.

Spreading rumors, repeated teasing, instigating" drama",  *Disrespectful messages might include negative comments based on ethnicity, race, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, national origin or other personal matters.

Physical Aggression

Inappropriate physical contact to a person or object without intent to cause harm or inflict pain.

Hitting, punching, hitting with an object, kicking, hair pulling, scratching, throwing objects,

Defacing Property / Vandalism

Student deliberately / intentionally impairs the usefulness of property.

Destruction (full or in part) of items, irreparable damage, vandalism,

Possession of Dangerous Instrument

Possession of or using any material with intent to suggest harm to others


Using everyday items to create weapons (Paperclips, scissors, or pencils)