ELLIJAY, Ga. – Gilmer High School is adding another point of recognition to its list. The school was recently recognized in the state-wide newsletter for Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (PBIS) updates. Read the full article below:
Gilmer County High School Fosters Student Voice in PBIS Implementation
Debi Keane, GaDOE PBIS Program Specialist
Many schools provide students with the opportunity to be involved in their implementation of School-wide PBIS by having their students to be active participants on their PBIS teams, student advisory teams, or their student ambassador program to address onboarding.
Gilmer County High School has included two students on their PBIS team from the very beginning. These two students recently attended their three-day GaDOE/RESA led training along with their teachers and administrators. Principal Carla Foley addressed the student body to explain PBIS implementation and to ask for volunteers. Ms. Foley also asked teachers to nominate possible students. Two students were selected for the team: Jhaydon Ragsdale, who volunteered, and Willow Newell, who was nominated by her teacher, Mr. Sutton.
Jhaydon and Willow attend the monthly PBIS team’s Tier-1 meetings to provide input as an integral part of the team’s decision-making process. They are also encouraged to speak with their peers to find out what’s working and what isn’t and what more could be done to improve school climate. They report this information back to the team.
Throughout the training, both students’ voices were heard. It was really impressive when Willow attended the training on a day when students had the day off! True dedication!
How schools obtain student voice varies from school to school. Student participation on a PBIS team is not a one-size-fits-all and is defined by the culture and climate at your individual school. Student roles may vary from school to school as well.
Just as the PBIS team is constantly evolving and changing to meet needs of schools, student participation will change as well. The bottom line is that the school community is working together toward a common language and positive environment for all.