PIQUA — Piqua High School Assistant Principal John Shoffstall created a new program called PBIS, which stands for positive behavior intervention and support. Shoffstall said, “It’s been a way to encourage students to make positive decisions and meet the expectations of our school.”
As a principal, Shoffstall holds the responsibility to make sure the student body as a whole is successful and improving each day. When he saw the increase of office referrals, he began to look for ways inspire the students. Shoffstall came across a program created by Piqua Central Intermediate School Principal Heath Butler called the Piqua Pride Program. His program was essentially a way to acknowledge students for what they were doing right instead only focusing on their mistakes. As Shoffstall said, “I don’t know about you, but I’m 37 and still like to be praised for my accomplishments. I like being recognized for my hard work, which is why I was attracted to Mr. Butler’s program.”
Shoffstall knew that the Piqua Pride Program, which was initially created for middle school students, wouldn’t work the same at the high school level. He decided we needed “something tangible for acknowledgement of good decisions and improvement.” Shoffstall incorporated “Indian Cards” into his program. They are handed out to students throughout the week and turned into their advisory teachers. Every Friday a name is drawn to win a prize, and then the cards are turned into Shoffstall to be put into a quarterly drawing. The budget for PBIS is created by Principal Rob Messick, and “just this year we have been able to reach relatively 420 or more students.”
Shoffstall’s hope for PBIS is for it to become “a movement” and a big part of starting it was to be sure that it would have the support of the staff. He created a PowerPoint and gathered the teachers to make sure their ideas were heard to further develop the program.
Another large part of PBIS becoming successful throughout the school was to be sure students also had a voice with their feedback. He asked a few teachers for recommendations of students that would work well together. They meet monthly and discuss student data and how best to spread the word about the program.