Tier 3 Positive Behavior Interventions and Support (PBIS)

Title Text: Tier 3 PBIS (How to get started and avoid common obstacles by Dr. Tim Grivois) with brightly colored border.

-by Dr. Timothy (Tim) Grivois, Executive Director

Tier 3 Positive Behavior Interventions and Support is social, emotional, and academic support designed and implemented as a team—youth included. The goal of Tier 3 PBIS is to increase a student’s social, emotional, and academic success by eliminating barriers to learning.

When I visit schools that implement Tier 3 PBIS well, I notice well-defined protocols and examples of individualized support:

  • Practical Functional Behavioral Analysis
  • (Realistic) Fidelity and Outcome Data
  • Quality of Life Indicators
  • “Classroom/Home/School Possible” behavior support strategies
  • Three to six-month time frame
  • Support plans tied to the rest of the school community

However, many schools building Tier 3 PBIS systems often struggle (at least at first):

  • Conflating T3 PBIS with 504/IEP processes
  • “Did you try a sticker chart?” Strategies instead of Quality of Life Indicators
  • “Classroom/Home/School IMpossible” behavior support strategies
  • Unrealistically short time frames
  • Plans that separate students from the school community

If your team is beginning to build T3 supports, you already know that a lot needs to be done right to be successful. The best way to create effective systems at this level is to learn as much as possible about how T3 teams function…..and get started as soon as possible.

One good way to start is to read. The Center on Positive Behavior Interventions and Support has every resource you’d receive at an expensive training available for free. If you and your team have a “DIY” mindset, read this article first. You’ll likely end up with a list of the next steps.

An even better way to begin (once you’ve read the article) is to get trained. A qualified trainer knows what Tier 3 PBIS looks like and has led T3 PBIS at the site or district level. They’ll also incorporate hands-on training where you will learn how to build successful Behavior Support Plans by teaching you how to complete each step and coaching you through the process at your site in between sessions.

If you’ve built solid Tier 1 and Tier 2 PBIS supports, you already know that some of your students need even more. However you choose to get started is the right way, so long as the result is a school better able to meet the needs of all learners—without exception.

Learn more about building effective T3 PBIS systems! Email me at tim@tgseducationalconsulting.com to get started.

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