Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports in CMSD

  • PBIS is CMSD's framework that connects the wide range of non-academic learning, supports, interventions, structures, and practices that create the conditions for joyful and adventurous learning environments.   It incorporates essential elements of classroom and school management with social-emotional learning for all, family and community engagement, and wraparound supports.

    PBIS stands for "Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports."  It reflects a fundamental belief that behavior modification strategies for ALL students should be positive, predictable, and restorative rather than punitive or punishing.  A strong evidence base has established that a PBIS approach leads to improved academic and non-academic outcomes for students, as well as improved conditions for learning and working.  A strong PBIS framework also reduces referrals for special education evaluation.

    PBIS in CMSD includes key foundational structures of all evidence-based PBIS models.  In schools implementing PBIS, you should see:

    • Expectations for student behavior are consistent, visible, and known to all.
    • Classrooms and common areas of the school have set routines in place.
    • Students are taught expected behaviors, rather than focusing on “what not to do.”
    • Positive, specific feedback and “kind language” are used to remind, reward, and redirect student behavior.
    • Rewards and consequences are consistent.
    • Consequences for misbehavior are restorative, rather than punitive.​
    • Students are given responsibilities, voice, and choice throughout the school environment.

    In addition to these foundational structures, CMSD believes that appropriate behavior is more likely to occur when students are able to develop key social-emotional competencies.  CMSD schools implement social-emotional learning so that students can develop competencies in self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible problem solving.  In schools implementing PBIS, you should see curricula such as:

    • PATHS (grades PreK-5)
    • Second Step (grades 6-8)
    • Facing History and Ourselves (high school)
    • Restorative Practices

    PBIS in CMSD means that students who struggle with behavior and social-emotional learning receive small group and individualized interventions, not just suspensions.  These interventions may include but are not limited to:

    The District implements PBIS on a system-wide basis. The Board of Education directs the Chief Executive Officer/designee to develop a PBIS system that is consistent with the components set forth in the Ohio Board of Education’s policy on positive behavior interventions and supports. The District encourages family involvement as an integral part of its PBIS system.

    ​The District identifies its commitment to PBIS in its Student Code of Conduct 2021-22, pages 37-38 and in Board Policy JP.


    The District's PBIS Steering Committee

    Jessica Baldwin, Interim Deputy Chief, Student Services

    Jillian Ahrens, 1st Grade Teacher and 3rd Vice President, Cleveland Teachers Union

    Sonja Clark, Network Support Leader

    Tracy Hill, Executive Director, Family and Community Engagement

    Caitlin Kilbane, Principal, Marion C. Seltzer

    Alice Krost, Director, Special Education Behavior Services

    Mary Moore, Intervention Specialist and 3rd Vice President, Cleveland Teachers Union

    Alyssa Starinsky, Head of School, Rhodes College and Career Academy

    Mary Ann Teitelbaum, Director, Psychological Services

    Karen Thompson-Repas, Director, Occupational and Physical Therapy

    Gregory Williams, Safety and Security

    Marianne Wolf, Director, Preschool Special Education

    Christopher Wyland, Principal, Remote School K-8