Through collaboration with students, teachers, parents and administration we have developed competencies that are aligned with ASCA’s Mindsets and Behaviors and modified them to meet the needs of our students. We have moved from providing curriculum on set dates throughout the year to immersing our counseling curriculum into the daily learning of our students. This is critical to our students’ needs, as repetition and consistency are important. These curricula are also important as they address the social emotional goals that are a part of each student’s IEP. Students are assessed weekly on PBIS, the data is uploaded into our school-wide data collection system, All In Learning. The Culture and Climate Committee, which is chaired by a counselor, works with teacher teams and the ILT to modify the program as needed. For example, last year we realized mid-year we were not seeing the growth we expected in students weekly behavior. We modified our Student PBIS sheet, one side was modified for our students who need more visual supports. After the revision we began to see an improvement in student scores.
We worked to ensure that our students in the C3 program were receiving a classroom curriculum that would allow them to develop the work-readiness skills to be registered with DRS. We worked with teachers develop our universal competencies, which are aligned to ASCA’s Mindsets and Behaviors. When selecting we did so based on the criteria of DRS to certify students. Our data was reflective of our students’ level of cognition. In the pre-test the lowest score was related to problem-solving. This is a higher order thinking skill that many of our students struggle with. We worked with teachers to provide students with lessons and specific interventions to help them develop these skills. One example is helping teachers develop task- analysis visuals for students. The increase in this score is reflective of the increased level of support that was provided.
The Chicago Public Schools Code of Conduct assigns infractions to each number group, they are as follows: Group 1- inappropriate behaviors, Group 2- disruptive, Group 3- seriously disruptive, Group 4 very seriously disruptive, Group 5- most seriously disruptive, Group 6 illegal and most seriously disruptive. Chicago Public Schools than groups these numbers into Groups 1-3 and Groups 4-6. We took this information and worked with teachers to identify tiered interventions for what the school identifies as minor behaviors (Groups 1-3) and major behaviors (Groups 4-6). We recognize that we did not meet our goal for Group 4-6 misconducts. We attribute this to the increased number of students that were placed at Southside for the 2016-17 with Behavior Plans attached to their IEPs. Through our data analysis practices we knew that throughout the year of those 16 misconducts 12 were from three students with Behavior Plans. We worked with teachers, parents, and providers to develop tiered supports for those students. As the year progressed the three students with multiple Group 4-6 misconducts decreased. Meaning, we saw the majority of the Group 4-6 misconducts at the beginning half of the year. It is not unusual for students with behavioral and emotional disorders to have a difficult time transitioning into a new school environment.
All of our students receive transportation to and from school. This is an excellent benefit, but can become an issue if the family moves, which happens often with our students. If a student changes his or her address Chicago Public Schools Transportation Department can take up to 2-3 weeks to re-route a student. Southside covers a huge geographic area, we are not a neighborhood school. It can take up to 45 mins to an hour for a parent to bring their child to school on public transportation. Having a counselor on the Attendance Committee had a positive impact on our collaboration with teachers. Using the Attendance Tracker that the Counseling Department developed, we were able to quickly identify issues and look for trends, overall and specific to individual students. Although we didn’t meet our goal, we knew the status of all our students. We knew who was chronically absent due to health issues, who had moved, etc. We had processes in place for teachers to notify the counseling office, quarterly incentives and recognition. We have discussed how we can modify the attendance curriculum to align more with PBIS. This will allow students to have access to the curriculum on an ongoing, consistent basis. Lessons that occur only once or twice is not an appropriate delivery method for our students.