WWC review of this study

Using positive behavior support procedures in Head Start classrooms to improve school readiness: A group training and behavioral coaching model [Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) vs. business as usual]

Feil, E. G., Walker, H., Severson, H., Golly, A., Seeley, J. R., & Small, J. W. (2009). NHSA Dialog, 12(2), 88–103. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ865812

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    263
     Students
    , grade
    PK

Reviewed: March 2022

No statistically significant positive
findings
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Social-Emotional Learning outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Aggressive behavior scale (ABS)

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
258 students

13.10

14.60

No

--
More Outcomes

Maladaptive behavior index (MBI)

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
263 students

16.40

18.50

No

--

Social interaction scale (SIS)

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
262 students

42.60

42.30

No

--

Adaptive behavior index (ABI)

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
262 students

33.20

31.90

No

--


Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • Female: 46%
    Male: 54%

  • Rural, Suburban
  • Race
    Other or unknown
    27%
    White
    73%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic    
    31%
    Not Hispanic or Latino    
    69%

Setting

The study took place in Oregon. Thirteen Head Start centers and 33 classrooms located in Lane County Head Start and Kidco Head Start participated in the study.

Study sample

Seventy-three percent of the students were White and 31% were Hispanic. Thirty percent of the mothers had some college. No information was reported for income. Ten percent of the children in the sample were eligible for special education services at the time of the study. Of the children eligible for special education services, Twenty-three percent of children had an emotional/behavioral disorder category, 55% of children certified for speech/language delay, 19% had a noncategorical/developmental delay and 9% were listed under other categories.

Intervention Group

Teachers taught, modeled, and periodically reviewed behavior standards and expectations with their students during a circle time activity and within generalized settings (e.g., hallways, playground, and gym). Teachers precorrected students for potentially difficult times or situations (e.g., “I am going to watch who can walk all the way past the library without talking”) and acknowledged and reinforced when children complied with expectations (e.g., “Because this morning everyone showed respect by working together so well, we’ll have five minutes of extra free time”). Children were taught routines for entering and exiting, transitions, and quiet-time areas. 'Second Step' violence prevention program (Grossman et al., 1997) was used in one center in each condition.

Comparison Group

Head Start centers in the comparison group continued with business-as-usual (that is, implemented Creative Curriculum) during the study’s first year, with the expectation that those centers would implement the intervention the following year. One comparison center also implemented the ‘Second Step’ violence prevention program during the first year of the study.

Support for implementation

Teachers in the intervention participated in a monthly 2-hour class for a total of 14 hours of training across the school year. A behavioral coach followed up with each participating teacher and was available for one-on-one consultation in his or her respective classroom during instructional hours.

 

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