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Ask the ‘TASC is a PBIS advice column from the RSE-TASC Specialists

Question: What are the most common pitfalls to avoid to keep PBIS effective? In districts where PBIS fades are there any common reasons why?

Response 1:

Dale Langley, 

Behavior Specialist

A few years ago, probably while googling for school examples and tools, I came across this list titled “Top 10 Reasons for Unsuccessful PBS Implementation” by Pam Hallvik. As a former PBIS coach and current regional trainer, it rings true.

  1. Not tracking behavior data and/or not responding to school behavior data
  2. Not working through the PBS process as a team
  3. Focusing only on the high risk students
  4. Lack of recognition that academic success is driven by school culture
  5. Lack of awareness that staff set and change culture in schools
  6. Taking on too much too fast
  7. Looking for the negative vs. looking for positives in student behavior
  8. Lack of administrative/continuous support/involvement
  9. Inconsistency of implementation by staff
  10. Lack of commitment, “buy-in” from staff

Response 2:

John McCabe, 

Non District School Improvement Specialist

Research shows that forming and maintaining an effective PBIS team is essential for initial and long-term implementation. The main obstacle and pitfall I find schools and districts make in implementing PBIS is neglecting the heath and functioning of the PBIS team. These three tips will help ensure your PBIS team stays healthy, avoids burn out and remains effective.

  1. Ensure that you always regularly meet as a team, even if it is for 15 minutes.
  2. Ensure that you always add new members after a period of sustained team work and particularly if you notice team numbers dwindling and energy falling
  3. Ensure that your goals for the team are group goals and are compelling enough to keep members interested and involved.

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