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WCMS Program Drops Disciplinary Issues By Rewarding Good Character

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
WCMS Program Drops Disciplinary Issues By Rewarding Good Character

White County Middle School has seen a drop in discipline referrals after implementing a program that incentivises students to do right.

Principal Farrah Griffith said positive behavioral interventions and support, also known as PBIS, has dropped administrator involvement in student behavior by 46 percent.

“Our school has warrior bucks,” Griffith said. “Every teacher gets 10 a week, so within our economy, there is about 1000 warrior bucks in circulation each week. When students are caught being good, our staff will give them a warrior buck.”

Griffith said the program has been in the works over the past five years. It allows students to purchase special perks such as rolling chair usage or listening to music during class.

Griffith said when first applied, the school did not see much success but the addition of a economy based reward system changed that.

“Money drives a lot of motives in life, and it is no different with kids in school,” Griffith said. “So having those incentives and opportunities to earn those bucks to use in class, I think has been a good incentive for kids to get behind the program.”

Griffith said students that follow the school’s, “Armor” code earn recognition. Griffith said the school mascot theme follows the seven habitats of an effective person. Warriors are always respectful, motivated, organized and responsible.

“I visited some schools in other areas that did PBIS and also some leader in me schools,” Griffith said. “Leader in me is based off of Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, kind of broken down into a kid version. I like the information that came from those seven habits, but for us, finding a way to simplify that.”

Griffith said keeping administration out of disciplinary issues allows students to spend more time in class learning.


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