Addressing Student Needs with Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS): Evaluating the Needs of Teachers in Appalachia

Within the Appalachian area, there are many children that have been exposed to a variety of traumatic experiences. Research has explored the efficacy of Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) as a means of helping children who have experienced Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and found this methodology to be highly effective. PBIS is a framework that utilizes a variety of evidence-based strategies focused on prevention and intervention within a multi-tiered model to effectively support students academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally. This practice has been demonstrated to reduce the instances of challenging behaviors that occur within the classroom environment and school-wide with a high degree of efficacy. Unfortunately many teachers within the Appalachian region are not thoroughly trained within this framework during their educational experiences and some may have only limited exposure while working within the educational system. By evaluating the exposure of teachers across Appalachia to PBIS and their current level of need for strategies to help them support students who exhibit behaviors of concern, we can develop effective university-level courses and training experiences that will enable future teachers to more effectively support students upon graduation from their university training programs.