Anderson Elementary in Bristol is a community school that is constantly working to strengthen their positive school culture for all stakeholders. To achieve this, they have been implementing a behavior support framework (RTI2-B) since 2018. Each year the behavior team has developed new approaches and strategies to increase program consistency and staff capacity to better support all students. Now Anderson serves as a model to schools in East Tennessee and beyond. As a Gold Level Model of Demonstration (RTI2-B) School for 2020-2021, Anderson hosted visits from area schools that have begun the process of implementing a behavior support framework (RTI2-B). Reaching beyond the local community, the behavior team has hosted panel discussions at national and statewide conferences to share the Anderson approach to implementing positive behavioral practices.
An important aspect of Anderson’s behavior support framework is teacher morale and support. Responding to teacher feedback, the behavior team and administration developed a teacher-care team. Teachers who need immediate support contact the office, and a team member engages with their class while the teacher takes a 20-min break, no questions asked. Along with the teacher-care team, Anderson has established a quarterly tradition of “teacher games.” Teachers get to participate in fun asynchronous games and activities throughout the week. These two practices have bolstered teacher support and morale and contributed to the positive climate in the building.
Increasing student support is a critical part of the behavior support framework (RTI2-B) at Anderson. During grade-level meetings, the team collaborates with teachers to identify their concerns, understand student needs, and make decisions to better support students within the framework. Another strategy Anderson shares with visiting schools is how they support students’ appropriate behavior: the team supplies a reward space both for students on behavior contracts and students identified by their teacher as models for behavior so they can be recognized for their positive contributions to the school.
Anderson is creating a restorative school environment for students. Feedback from teachers and students led to the creation of a “Reset Room” (e.g., calming room) for their students. This space was designed to guide students through the restorative process with all parties in mind. After a conflict has occurred, the reset room provides students an opportunity to bring themselves back to calm, replay the event, and make a plan to rebuild relationships affected by the conflict. Anderson’s Behavior Interventionist, Scott Lamie, wrote an article about the Reset Room to improve its impact across the school. We are proud to support the exceptional efforts by the staff, students, and community at Anderson Elementary to strengthen the positive culture in their school.