Positive Behavior Program
Atwater Avenue Elementary School has adopted the BEST (Building Effective School Together) Positive Behavior Support Program. The program works under the presumption that every person in the school community – parents, students, teachers, administrators, support personnel – all have specific responsibilities in ensuring a safe, challenging educational environment that respects the rights and differences of all. The Los Angeles Unified School District has implemented a foundation Discipline Policy that embeds school-wide Positive Behavior Support (PBS) as a proactive mean to provide consistency among all district schools while allowing individual sites the freedom to tailor programs to the needs of their school communities. Additionally, Atwater has begun to implement Restorative Justice practices as a way to build, repair and maintain resilient communities.
Atwater Avenue Elementary School is currently implementing a school-wide PBIS program. Some examples of PBS strategies are: 1) Calling each student by name. 2) Engaging students in the discussion of shared personal experiences. 3) Firm but respectful engagement of off-task or inappropriate behavior. 4) Allowing students time to make good choices. 5) Positively reinforcing desired behaviors. 6) Teaching and revisit all school rules and desired behaviors.
A team of teachers, administrators, and support staff meet monthly to discuss, plan, and implement programs that support these concepts. The shared vision is to increase student achievement through the teaching of all school rules, positively reinforcing desired behaviors, and building a safe, positive, and nurturing community where each stakeholder feels valued.
At Atwater Avenue Elementary School, we have phrased all of our rules (in each location of the school) utilizing the three main categories of:
- We are Safe
- We are Responsible
- We are Respectful
This behavior model has been aptly named the “The Atwater Way.” When teaching or correcting a student, it is essential to use this universal form so that it reinforces the consistency of the rules and understanding of each student. Providing a clear expectation of the desired behavior is a key component of the program. All staff members are encouraged to take a leadership role by attending the monthly team meetings.