When Otilia, an assistant principal for K-2, contacted me about advice on how she can better support her teachers, I was absolutely impressed! She said that by the time she gets called and to the room that the kids are in a full fit.
I have spoken with many people that have similar frustrations, so I thought having a POSITIVE linky about ways administration could support you more with behaviors in your classroom would be a great thing. This is not to be a gripe session about the difficulties that you have dealt with! This is an opportunity for us to write things that would help us in the classroom with the hopes that more administrators will be like Otilia and look for advice to support more!
So.. when things go from this......
1. Move as fast as you can. Usually by the time the office is called, the teacher really needs help, so get there as fast as you can. If you can't, have someone else go.
2. Have a crisis plan in place for your school and use it as it is planned!! You can set this up in a variety of ways, but a well set up crisis plan is nothing if it isn't implemented correctly.
3. Communicate - The teacher has been there since the behaviors started, so listen to the teacher on what is going on when you arrive. Do not just assume! Sometimes you need to just get the child out of the situation and there isn't time to talk. You can always have the teacher write you a note to send to you before you proceed or call them from your office, so that they can explain things without the student hearing, as this might set the child off more if they hear the teacher "telling on them". Then, communicate any consequences that may be decided.
4. Be willing to remove a student from the classroom. Not only does a child need time to calm, but many times a teacher needs some time to calm down from a situation also. Depending on the situation, removing the student is the best idea. Other times, it might be nice for the administrator to take over the class for just a few minutes while the teacher runs to the bathroom or something just to regroup.
5. Know the behavior plans of consistent behavior issues! This is probably one of my most important pieces of advice on the subject. For a consistent behavior student, there is probably a written behavior plan with steps for dealing with the behavior and a data tracking piece. Follow the behavior plan as best as possible. We have to show the students a united front and if the teacher is following the plan in the classroom, but then it is not followed when removed from the room, the behaviors will escalate. Students are smart and if they know they are going to be able to to get out of class and just hang out in the office, they are going to do it more often. If they know that there are certain consequences or steps followed in the classroom, but those aren't followed by others in the school, they will quickly find ways around it.
6. My last piece of advice is to help with documentation. Special Education teachers, especially, are consistently documenting behaviors. It is great to have documented things from others that deal with the student also to show the settings and the people that the behavior happens with it. Take a few minutes to ask the best way to document it for the teacher. Many will be good with a quick e-mail that can be added to a file.
Thank you to those wonderful administrators that are working to help their staff with behaviors. I truly want to thank Otilia for writing me about this topic. I hope this helps!
I would love for anyone else to link up with your thoughts on what support would help in your room also!
You can grab the picture at the top of the page to add to your post. Then, link your post up below!