Impact of PBIS on Students with Disabilities

Post date: Mar 25, 2014 8:37:50 PM

Nationally, students with disabilities are suspended from school at about twice the rate of their non-disabled peers (Losen & Gillespie, 2012), putting this vulnerable group of students at great risk of academic failure and dropping out of school. Thus, tracking the progress of this subgroup of students is an important step in determining the effectiveness of multi-tiered systems of behavior support, a critical component for improving school outcomes for all students.

Equity in Discipline Improves Access to Instruction

Growing evidence from Illinois schools documents the relationship between PBIS implementation and reductions in discipline referrals and suspensions for students with disabilities. Subsequently, students disproportionately removed from instruction due to behavior is being reduced. Achieving equity in discipline increases students' access to instructional time. This positively impacts academic outcomes and can ultimately decrease the potential to drop out of school, thus leading to increased graduation rates (Jerald, 2006). This Update provides multiple examples of decreased suspensions as well as gains in instructional time for students with disabilities who are accessing a multi-tiered, schoolwide system of positive behavior support in Illinois.