A Multipronged Approach in Tigard-Tualatin Decreases Suspensions and Expulsions
Tigard-Tualatin School District
Drawing on evidence-based practices, the Tigard-Tualatin (Oregon) School District has decreased suspensions and expulsions by using a systemic, multipronged approach that addresses the three tiers of intervention—universal (first tier), selected (second tier), and indicated (third tier):
At the universal level, Tigard-Tualatin employs the preventive PBIS approach to improve the school climate for all students.
The district’s PBIS Yellow Zone Teams provide second-tier selected academic and behavior intervention planning and monitoring.
PBIS Red Zone Teams—which include the principal or associate principal, school counselors, learning specialists, SS/HS mental health care coordinators, School Resource Officers, and the SS/HS juvenile counselor—offer indicated third-tier support. These teams work to implement interventions—based on data collection about absences, office disciplinary referrals, and suspensions—for students reaching identified thresholds in these areas.
In addition, the Check In/Check Out program has been implemented as a second-tier intervention for the improvement of school attendance and school engagement for selected middle school students with attendance or early behavior problems. Key features of this program include the following:
Frequent feedback to students about their behavior, which helps prevent future problem behavior
Positive reinforcement to students for meeting daily goals
Data tracking of positive behavior in addition to disciplinary issues
Acknowledgement of expected behavior through a reward system
Solid data demonstrate that this evidence-based approach is working. For example, in 2010–2011, there was a 34% decrease in office disciplinary referrals and a 54% decrease in suspensions among students participating in Check In/Check Out.