Part of my current role is to offer professional development trainings to various teams in the educational world. Sometimes, they are directors and coordinators, in position of leadership and decision making. Others are teachers, general and special education, responsible for carefully balancing the needs of both behavior and academics on a moment-to-moment basis, day in and day out. And still others are teaching assistants, or dedicated aides, who are often responsible for all of the above, at the lowest end of the pay scale.
What I love most about this part of my work is giving staff the tools to get ahead of challenging behavior. Once we know the formula of the science of behavior, we can begin to think through that lens, and meet challenging behavior as it occurs, without allowing it to grow and morph into a much larger problem. It is possible for all staff, at any level of education or other disciplines, to be equipped with the tools for observing, analyzing and understanding ALL behavior; that includes ours and the students.'
When we do this as a team, at the onset of a new school, a whole new level of learning and change can take place. Because academic demands and pressures are so high at this time, for teachers and students, there is great competition of what else to offer as professional development training to staff. I often make the case to school administrators that they can either spend countless hours throughout the school year following challenging behavior, or spend a few hours at the beginning of the year getting ahead of it... It's a choice.