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Emerging Practices in Secondary School-Wide Screening for Students At- Risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Presented by Ellie L. Young, Ph.D. &

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Presentation on theme: "Emerging Practices in Secondary School-Wide Screening for Students At- Risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Presented by Ellie L. Young, Ph.D. &"— Presentation transcript:

1 Emerging Practices in Secondary School-Wide Screening for Students At- Risk for Emotional and Behavioral Disorders Presented by Ellie L. Young, Ph.D. & Brenda Wesson, B.S.

2 Peaceable Schools Positive behavior support strategies to increase the capacity of schools to implement effective prevention and intervention practices for all students. Funding from 5 yr federal grant Field Initiated Research. U.S. Department of Education. CFDA 84.324C

3 What is School-wide Positive Behavior Support? SW-PBS is a whole-school approach to discipline that includes a broad range of systemic & individualized strategies for achieving social & learning outcomes while preventing problem behavior with all students. (Horner and Sugai, 2000)

4 Slide courtesy of Ken Merrell, University of Oregon

5 Levels of Intervention Focus on –prevention, –early identification and intervention Unique features school-wide screening at the middle and junior high school preventative social skill training for all students targeted secondary level interventions for identified at-risk students Achievement Plus Class

6 Interventions for all students Teach and review school norms and rules through weekly school-wide social skill instruction Direct instruction of social skills How to listen How to apologize How to follow directions How to respond to teasing

7 Secondary Level of Intervention Achievement Plus Class Key Curriculum Features: 1.Social Skills Instruction 2.Organizational Skills 3.Learning Strategies & Study Skills 4.Emotional Resiliency: Strong Kids and Strong Teens 1. m 5.Self-Management

8 Why conduct school-wide screening? Screening and assessment provide the basis for effective intervention; but are largely absent from actual practice, especially in middle schools and junior high schools. Prevention and early intervention are much more likely to be successful with students not yet identified as EBD/ED and reduce the need for other intensive special education or community services.

9 Importance of Screening at the Secondary Level Transition from elementary setting to secondary setting. Several significant educational changes –Self-contained classrooms (1 teacher) vs. departmentalized classrooms (many teachers) –Higher expectations for independent management of emotional, social, and academic issues. Developmental changes –Physical development –Increased social circles –Move from same-gender friendships to mixed-gender friendships and romantic relationships –Cognitive development (Wigfield, A., Eccles, J. S., Mac Iver, D., Reuman, D. A., Midgley, C. (1991)

10 Research Question? How accurate is the Systematic Screening for Behavior Disorders (SSBD) in identifying students in grades 7-9 at risk for internalizing and externalizing behavior problems?


12 Total Students 23,078 Male 12018 Female 11060 Secondary Students 11,326 Free & Reduced Lunch 29% African American 0%Asian 0% Native American 1%Hispanic 6% Pacific Islander1%Caucasian 92% Nebo School District Overview

13 Supportive Data Sources Office referrals Correlation with assessment instruments normed for age group including the Achenbach Teacher Report (TRF) Form and AGS Social Skills Rating System (SSRS) Teacher Version

14 Administration of Instruments First wave: SSBDStage 1 Teachers were given descriptions of internalizing and externalizing behaviors Teachers were instructed to review their entire class rosters (approximately 180 students) and nominate up to 5 students in both externalizing and internalizing categories.

15 Top Problem Behaviors Externalizers 1.Ignores teacher warnings or reprimands 2.Physically aggressive 3.Damages others' property 4.Is teased, neglected, and/or avoided by peers 5.Has tantrums Internalizers 1.Painful shyness 2.Sad affect, depression, and feelings of worthlessness 3.Is teased, neglected, and/or avoided by peers 4.Gets lost in own thoughts 5.Ignores teacher warnings or reprimands

16 SSBD Stage One: Data Summary 1.Frequency Scores = # of teacher nominations 2.Composite Scores = Sum of ranks across all nominations 3. Students were ranked in descending order based on the frequency score

17 Student Frequency Comp Ranking Student # of nominations Teacher1 Rank Teacher2 Rank Teacher3 Rank Teacher4 Rank Teacher5 Rank Composite Ranking Student154345 319 Student254354 420 Student34345 4 16 Student44344 3 14 Student54343 2 12 Student64324 3 12 Student73243 9 Student83243 9

18 Requisite Scores for Advancing to SSBD Stage Two: Frequency = > or equal to 2 Composite Rank = > or equal to 5 Assessments used in Stage Two: TRF SSRS SSBD Critical Events Checklist



21 What we learned Moderate correlations for students with externalizing behaviors More work to do to identify students with internalizing behaviors Include more data points –Office discipline referrals –Attendance –Counselor Referrals –Grades –Other

22 Other questions Have changes occurred school- wide in disciplinary referrals?

23 Peaceable School Violations Problem BehaviorDefinition PSV 1 Abusive Language/Inappropriate Language/Profanity Verbal messages that include swearing, name calling, or use of words in an inappropriate way. PSV 2Physical Contact Non-serious, but inappropriate physical contact (e.g., pinching, poking, tapping or poking with objects. PSV 3Non-complianceBrief or low-intensity failure to respond to adult requests. PSV 4 Defiance/ Disrespect/ Insubordination Refusal to follow directions, talking back and/or socially rude interactions. PSV 5Minor DisruptionLow-intensity, but inappropriate disruption. PSV 6Major Disruption Behavior causing an interruption in a class or activity. Disruption includes sustained loud talk, yelling, or screaming; noise with materials; horseplay or roughhousing; and/or sustained out-of-seat behavior. PSV 7Property misuse Low-intensity misuse of property (e.g., writing on desk, pencil fighting, tearing or writing in textbook). PSV 8Littering Purposefully leaving litter/trash within the school or on school grounds. PSV 9HarassmentLow-intensity, inappropriate physical, verbal, and/or sexual harassment PSV 10 Lying/ Cheating Academically Student delivers message that is untrue and/or deliberately violates rules.





28 Discussion Data analysis is preliminary Larger samples are needed to make a more conclusive analysis On the basis of the current sample, the SSBD appears to identify students with externalizing behaviors with greater certainty than internalizing behaviors If the scores for the measures have a reasonable correlation, using only SSBD stage 1 or both SSBD stage 1 and 2 is probably the most efficient and valid means of screening at the secondary level.

29 Student Responses to the Peaceable Schools Model I learned to realize when Im doing something wrong My grades really improved because now I care about my life; I dont fight a lot with my parents anymore; I can control my anger now. I can talk to my teachers, I study more and I get better grades.

30 Future Research Continued data collection and analysis The correlations r =.42 and r =.45 (internalizers) and r =.60 and r =.61 (externalizers) may be impacted by the preliminary sample sizes. Future research will increase sample size; as a result, correlations may be stronger. Future Research will consider using direct observational data in a secondary setting to compare with SSBD Stage II scores

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