BCS Advantage Magazine Fall 2017 - Page 17

Valley Springs Middle School PBIS- Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports By Stacia Harris, Communications Department 7th Grader Makarri Tobe cheers during a PBIS Pep Rally at the beginning of the year. “It’s amazing,” assistant principal Wendy Hannah said. “The kindness we see throughout the school is inspiring. The students and teachers are so invested in this program!” All BCS Intermediate and Middle Schools have implemented a PBIS framework to create a positive, productive, and engaging environment for students and staff. “PBIS helps our middle schoolers focus and understand the behavior that’s expected of them,” said Hannah. “Middle schoolers want to be a part of something bigger than themselves, and our PBIS program helps create a sense of community that students want to support.” Bethany Chapman, 7th grade teacher gives Mattie Bailey a Golden Ticket for good behavior. Students also receive rewards for good behavior. Teachers may give out Golden Tickets or Ram Bucks, which students can put in a drawing for special prizes or use to earn special pri vileges. “It’s good to be a part of this community, because people are trying to be their best,” said eighth-grader James Sherlin. “Our teachers have high expectations for us, and they are on the lookout to catch us doing good.” 7x7 Katrina Fox is a seventh-grade English/Language Arts teacher. She helps facilitate the 7x7 program at Valley Springs. Seventh-graders choose an area non-profit, or several if they’d like, volunteer for at least seven hours, then put together a presentation about what they’ve learned. “Students are building more than reading and writing skills here at Valley Springs; they are learning life skills that they will take with them into adulthood,” Fox said. She says students often volunteer with family members and they remain connected to that non-profit, even after the project is over. “It’s emotional to see the students present their projects,” she said. “They are so excited about helping others. We are able to spark some conversations about who we are and what we want to put out in our community.” Ms. Fox says being of service to others is a humbling experience and an important life lesson for students in this age group. 15