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A MEASURED RESPONSE: CARING FOR OUR DISTRESSED STUDENTS.

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Presentation on theme: "A MEASURED RESPONSE: CARING FOR OUR DISTRESSED STUDENTS."— Presentation transcript:

1 A MEASURED RESPONSE: CARING FOR OUR DISTRESSED STUDENTS

2 ETSU RESPONSE Admissions Advisory Committee Student Behavior Management Team Counseling Center Website Response Protocol for Life Threatening Behavior Critical Incident Response Team Faculty Workshops: Mitigating Classroom Disruption

3 RESPONDING TO DISRUPTIVE STUDENTS IN THE CLASSROOM TBR policy makes you responsible for control of your classroom Three steps to help deal with the disruptive student All threats should be taken seriously and campus police should be notified Confront the problem directly Don’t worry about being sued

4 Why should Staff and Faculty Intervene? A student’s inability to cope poses a serious threat to their ability to learn You may be the only individual to notice that a student is struggling who does something about it Your failure to intervene may lead to more serious consequences for the student The student’s inability to cope may be acted out in your classroom

5 Why are Some People Difficult? Emotional or physical depletion Frustration Emotional wounds and/or self-esteem Emotional regression (ego-centric, tantrums) Insatiable needs (status, attention, power, control) Lack of skills Substance abuse or mental illness Issues from the family of origin

6 Recognizing the Troubled Student: Level I Serious grade problems or a noticeable decline in academic performance Excessive absences or lateness Becoming isolated or withdrawn Marked change in personal hygiene Noticeable lethargy or hyperactivity Falling asleep in class

7 Recognizing the Troubled Student: Level 2 Repeated requests for special consideration New or regularly occurring behavior that pushes the limits of decorum and may interfere with teaching Unusual or exaggerated emotional responses to situations

8 Recognizing the Troubled Student: Level 3 Highly disruptive behavior (hostile, aggressive, violent, etc.) Inability to communicate clearly (garbled, slurred speech, unconnected or disjointed thoughts) Loss of contact with reality Overt suicidal thoughts or threats Homicidal thoughts or threats

9 Options for Faculty and Staff Do nothing Deal directly with the disruptive behavior in a manner that limits it to the classroom issue Deal with the situation in a more personal manner

10 What Stops Faculty and Staff from Intervention “Benign Inaction” Fear of receiving inadequate administrative support Fear of harming the psychologically fragile student Fear of legal or physical reprisals Guilt View of discipline as a negative process Lack of training in disciplinary processes

11 Options for Effective Intervention Talk with the student Make a referral Consult with other campus professionals Contact the Dean of Students Contact the Campus Security Document all interactions

12 Responses to Level One Issues Talk with the student and assertively express your concern in a caring manner Help student process options that may address your concern Be aware of referral resources and be ready to give the student the name of a contact person and contact information Set clear and appropriate boundaries for behavior in question

13 Responses to Level Two Issues Identify pattern of behavior that has raised your concern and express it clearly to the student Establish clear consequences for continuation of the behavior Provide referral resources and contacts for the student, and in the event of severe concern, ensure that student makes contact

14 Responses to Level Three Issues Contact Campus Security to ensure your own safety and that of other students Remove student from any public area with attention to your own security Assess level of distress and potential to harm self or others Have Campus Security transport student to hospital or other appropriate agency Debrief incident with administrators and others who were involved

15 Suggestions for Talking with a Student Speak privately Avoid being judgmental Listen sensitively Help the student process their options Respect the student

16 Positive Listening Skills Separate your own emotions from the other’s words Fully commit yourself to listening, give them your full attention Be respectful, wait for the other individual to complete their statement before expressing your own ideas Focus on what the other person is saying and give it careful consideration using your own analytical skills

17 Hostility and Verbal Abuse Distinguish verbal abuse from anger Consider safety issues It is acceptable and sometimes necessary to simply ask the person to leave Understand the goal(s) of the person -to get what he/she wants -to be heard -to gain control -to provoke a reaction (pick a fight)

18 Strategies for Handling Hostility Don’t take it personally Remain calm. Stay in charge of your emotions Listen Reflect that you have heard the issue Keep your goals in mind: -Reduce hostility and tension -Be in control of yourself -Find resolution -Improve the relationship

19 De-Escalating with Non-Verbals Respond with a measured voice Slow down the pace of speech Maintain eye contact Equalize level of eye contact Space (do not touch) Offer an open and solid body posture

20 De-Escalating Verbally Do Not: Engage in defending yourself or debating Engage in a power struggle Tell the individual what they should do Ask them “why” Threaten or challenge the individual Use put-downs or insults

21 De-Escalating Verbally Do: Respond in a general, non-personalized manner Respect the other person (Sir or Miss) Respond in an honest, direct manner Document what they are saying…”Could you repeat that?” Set firm limits with bullies Be genuine

22 Steps for Handling the Disruptive Student Do what you can to deal with the situation yourself Consult with the Division Chair If appropriate, consult with the Dean of Students Always remember that Campus Security is there to assist

23 Making a Referral Determine if the student is aware they have a problem Determine the student’s willingness to positively address their problem Determine the most appropriate referral option based upon the student’s needs and his/her willingness to address his/her concern Determine if the student should be escorted to the appropriate referral resource and by whom

24 Observable Symptoms of Mental Health Issues Depression Manic Behavior Anxiety Psychosis Drug and Alcohol Abuse

25 Syllabus Suggestions Policy regarding attendance, punctuality and tardiness, including consequences. Statement regarding appropriate behavior between student and instructor and/or classmates. Appropriate expectations for instructor time and attention inside and outside of class room. General policies regarding communication with instructor, including instructor office hours and location, appointments and drop-in policy, phone number and policy regarding returning telephone calls. Statement regarding conflict resolution in the classroom (how to discuss differences/disagreements with the instructor and other students).

26 Syllabus Suggestions General policy on eating, drinking, smoking in class. General policy regarding children and visitors in class. General policy regarding breaks and leaving and entering class at other than break time(s). General policy on plagiarism. General policy regarding cell phones, pagers, laptop computers, PDAs

27 COUNSELING CENTER WEBSITE p/concern/default.aspx


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