PBIS at DJJ: Eastman YDC Events

January 5, 2018

Story information from Misty Winter

There was a flurry of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) during the holidays and at the end of 2017 for the staff and youth at the Eastman Youth Development Center (Eastman YDC). Facility youth who had not received any Disciplinary Reports (DRs) or Special Incident Reports (SIRs) and who had 100 percent participatory attendance in group activities had the chance to experience a wide range of fun events.

The different events and options provided variety and interest to all of the PBIS eligible youth. The Eastman YDC "cake slice walk" had 51 youths enjoying a tasty treat for their good behavior. With the PANTHER POP UP, youth were rewarded for attending a special aggression replacement therapy group. Others in the PBIS program found happiness in being allowed to play video games in the new Panther Game Room.

However, one of the top rewards that drew the interest of all was the opportunity for qualified youths to spend time with family members during the holidays. While special in and of itself, these unique visits were further augmented by the allowance of outside food and the opportunity for all to play games if they wished. For participants and observers alike, the visits helped to put everyone in the holiday spirit and to highlight the importance of family bonding at DJJ.

PBIS is an evidence-based, data-driven framework proven to reduce disciplinary incidents, increase a school’s sense of safety and support improved academic outcomes. More than 23,000 U.S. schools are implementing PBIS and saving countless instructional hours otherwise lost to discipline. The premise of PBIS is that continual teaching, combined with acknowledgement or feedback of positive student over the counter behavior, will reduce unnecessary discipline and promote a climate of greater productivity, safety and learning. PBIS schools apply a multi-tiered approach to prevention, using disciplinary data and principles of behavior analysis to develop school-wide, targeted and individualized interventions and supports to improve the school climate for all students.

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