The Verona Area School District Board of Education is currently reviewing the behavior and discipline plans for each of the 11 schools in the school district. Following review, the board will make a recommendation moving toward a more consistent approach to behavior and discipline district wide. For more information on each of the schools' behavior and discipline programs in place, please visit each individual school webpage from this website or contact their staff.
Our goal of preparing all students for college, careers, and civic life cannot be met without first creating safe schools where effective teaching and learning can take place. Simply put, no school can be a great school — and ultimately prepare all students for success — if it is not first a safe school.
Currently, the Verona Area School District is utilizing multiple approaches to address behavior and discipline:
•The Nurtured Heart Approach
: A culturally responsive, relationship-focused approach helping children (and adults) build their Inner Wealth® and use their intensity in successful ways. Currently, we have 14 trainers in the district, offering staff and parent trainings.
: A culturally responsive use of informal and formal processes that involved use of community circles, proactively building relationships and a sense of community to prevent conflict. Currently, more than 40 staff members took part in trainings over Summer 2015 and are returning to their own schools, using the circle approach. Feel free to inquire with your own school about what they are doing in Restorative Practices.
•Positive Behavior Interventions & Supports
(PBIS): PBIS is a process for creating safer, more effective schools by reinforcing positive behavior and preventing and addressing problem behavior. Currently, all the schools of the Verona Area School District carry out various aspects of PBIS, while a handful of schools are actually designated as a PBIS school.
•Nonviolent Crisis Intervention
(NVCI): NVCI addresses the need for training in safe, respectful, noninvasive methods for addressing challenging behavior. A major focus of the training is addressing behavior challenges positively and proactively so they do not become more disruptive or confrontational. Regular trainings occur in NVCI for teachers and staff to develop and refine their skills in this approach.
These Badger Ridge Middle School students took part in a Restorative Practices circle, building a sense of community and respect--everyone visible, with every voice holding value. The speaker within the circle becomes the center of the classroom. Facing one another, listening, and looking at each other as a classmate shares their perspective is extremely powerful and humanizing. While the conversation prompt may be the same, the feeling is very different--especially when establishing a sense of community.
--Badger Ridge Principal Michael Murphy
Core Knowledge Charter School teachers take part in a Restorative Practices circle.
Even though national rates of school violence have decreased overall, many schools are still struggling to create the nurturing, positive, and safe environments needed to boost student achievement and success. No student or adult should feel unsafe or unable to focus in school, yet this is often a reality. Simply relying on suspensions and expulsions, however, is not the answer to creating a safe and productive school environment.
Unfortunately, a significant number of students are removed from class each year — even for minor infractions of school rules — due to exclusionary discipline practices, which disproportionately impact students of color and students with disabilities.
Again, the school district is visiting behavior and discipline plans from all 11 schools and will be working extensively on a district plan to maintain our mission of a safe, but successful, environment for all. Also taken into consideration is the U.S Dept. of Education RESOURCE GUIDE ON SCHOOL CLIMATE & DISCIPLINE
. Find additional information on this subject at http://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/school-discipline/index.html