Presentation Title

Take It To the Bus: Extending the PBIS Framework to School Buses

Brief Biography

Krystal Kennedy is an Exceptional Learning PhD student and teaching assistant with the special education department at Tennessee Technological University (TTU). Additionally, Krystal serves as a behavior specialist for Momentum Behavior Analysis, LLC where she provides behavioral services to children and families throughout Middle Tennessee. Krystal is the former grant-funded positive behavior support and inclusion coordinator for services offered through TTU where was responsible for providing technical assistance to school systems for all three PBIS tiers throughout the Upper Cumberland TN Region. Krystal is a TTU graduate with a B.S. and a M.A. in Special Education. She completed postgraduate coursework in Applied Behavior Analysis at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and is set to graduate with her PhD in Exceptional Learning from TTU in the summer of 2016. Prior to entering higher education, Krystal was a special education teacher. During her career as a special educator, Krystal worked with students of all ages in inclusive and resource settings and incorporated the principles of applied behavior analysis into the classroom. Krystal's research interests include school bus interventions, school bus driver behavior management strategies, school bus driver behavior management training, and peer-mediated behavioral interventions.

Dr. King is an Assistant Professor of Special Education at TTU where he teaches courses related to foundations of special education, behavior management, applied behavior analysis, and research methods. As a special educator and Board Certified Behavior Analyst, Dr. King has extensive experience addressing the needs of children with emotional disturbance, autism spectrum disorders, and other chronic behavior issues. Dr. King is also a certified instructor in universal behavior management techniques. He received his doctoral training at the University of Pittsburgh and served as a research coordinator at Vanderbilt University. He has contributed to projects evaluating schoolwide instructional interventions and coordinated federally funded research projects in special education. His research interests include academic and instructional interventions for students with emotional disturbance and other chronic behavior issues.

Highest Degree of Presenter(s)

Krystal Kennedy, MA

Seth King, PhD, BCBA-D

Presentation Abstract

Schools increasingly promote the use of positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) to reduce behavioral concerns. However, many schools have not extended the PBIS framework to the school buses despite the need to reduce challenging behaviors. This session introduces a model for the implementation of universal, or Tier 1, PBIS on school buses in rural Tennessee schools and provides practitioners with resources and ideas to initiate a PBIS framework on one or more school buses.

PBIS coaches collected baseline and post-intervention data using bus office discipline referrals (ODR) from eleven schools within the same district. All school buses implemented a bus-based PBIS framework consisting of posted expectations and positive consequences (e.g., tokens, behavior specific praise) for one year. Results indicated bus ODRs were reduced by an average of 30% (Range = 6% -50%) for six participating schools. Implications for PBIS training and implementation will be discussed. Social validity data concluded that drivers understood the intervention (87%), found the intervention effective (89%), and were willing to continue using PBIS on their bus (95%).

The session’s focus will be on the development of school-wide expectations across buses along with consistent consequences for appropriate behavior. Details regarding PBIS trainings, reactions of participating school staff and a discussion of results will assist practitioners in implementing bus behavior management systems in their own settings. This presentation has the potential to help practitioners reduce office discipline referrals for school bus behavior and enhance the quality of extant PBIS frameworks.

The basic framework of PBIS has been adapted to extend to the school bus setting. This framework may also be easily adapted to extend into the home environment. By attending this session, families will see how the basic PBIS concepts are applied outside of the school building and how the concepts can be adapted for alternative environments.

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Take It To the Bus: Extending the PBIS Framework to School Buses

Schools increasingly promote the use of positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) to reduce behavioral concerns. However, many schools have not extended the PBIS framework to the school buses despite the need to reduce challenging behaviors. This session introduces a model for the implementation of universal, or Tier 1, PBIS on school buses in rural Tennessee schools and provides practitioners with resources and ideas to initiate a PBIS framework on one or more school buses.

PBIS coaches collected baseline and post-intervention data using bus office discipline referrals (ODR) from eleven schools within the same district. All school buses implemented a bus-based PBIS framework consisting of posted expectations and positive consequences (e.g., tokens, behavior specific praise) for one year. Results indicated bus ODRs were reduced by an average of 30% (Range = 6% -50%) for six participating schools. Implications for PBIS training and implementation will be discussed. Social validity data concluded that drivers understood the intervention (87%), found the intervention effective (89%), and were willing to continue using PBIS on their bus (95%).

The session’s focus will be on the development of school-wide expectations across buses along with consistent consequences for appropriate behavior. Details regarding PBIS trainings, reactions of participating school staff and a discussion of results will assist practitioners in implementing bus behavior management systems in their own settings. This presentation has the potential to help practitioners reduce office discipline referrals for school bus behavior and enhance the quality of extant PBIS frameworks.

The basic framework of PBIS has been adapted to extend to the school bus setting. This framework may also be easily adapted to extend into the home environment. By attending this session, families will see how the basic PBIS concepts are applied outside of the school building and how the concepts can be adapted for alternative environments.