Kennewick School District joins in on Positive Behavior Interven - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Kennewick School District joins in on Positive Behavior Intervention Program

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Kennewick, WA -  Positive Behavior Interventions and Support (PBIS), is a program that has been around for years throughout schools around the country and in Washington. Aiming to reduce problematic behavior by supporting positive attitudes, local districts like Yakima, Richland, Pasco, and Grandview already have PBIS implemented into their core values.  With the start of the 2016-2017 school year, Kennewick School District joins the roster. 

Right now, Horse Heaven Hills Middle School is the only school in the district using PBIS, but the district soon plans to expand it to other middle schools.

"The great thing about this program is that it fits your school, how you want to be positive with the students and what you want to do to recognize your students for what their doing right," said Tammy Hutchison, Assistant Principal at Horse Heaven Hills MS.

At Horse Heaven Hills, PBIS is being applied in a variety of different ways, the main way being with PRIDE, which stands for Prepared, Respectful, Independent, Dedicated, or Empathetic.  So if a student is exhibiting any of those behaviors, and a staff member notices, they get rewarded with a pride card, that is redeemable for prizes and perks, like school supplies or getting out of class early. 

"After class we were about to walk out the door, and a kid picked up his binder, but it was open and his pencils fell out, so I helped him pick them up and and my teacher came up to me, said thank you and gave me a pride card, I just want to get more so I can get more pencils," said Nick Powers, 8th Grader at Horse Heaven Hills.

Another way PBIS is working at Horse Heaven Hills, is by having students be assigned to an advisory group that they can check in with weekly, to make connections with their peers and staff.

"Making peer relationships, and relationships with adults, that is the key to building cohesiveness, that is the key to making kids feel like their cared about," said Hutchison.

"It means a lot that they actually notice, because a lot of times I'll do something nice and it's just between me and person I'm helping, so it's cool to get noticed like that, it's pretty cool," said Powers.

Horse Heaven Hills Middle School joins the 378 other schools in Washington with PBIS. Learn more about PBIS, here