Research shows that positive reinforcement is one of the best ways to not only change problematic, or unexpected behavior, but also to encourage and maintain expected behavior. Positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) establishes clear behavior expectations to support all students in achieving social, emotional, and academic success.  In addition to making behavior expectations clear to students, PBIS provides behavioral supports when needed, and fosters a positive environment where appropriate behavior is acknowledged and rewarded. 
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We have developed a matrix listing the behavior we expect from students in all common areas of the school building (displayed below).

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Our school wide goal is to create an inclusive and welcoming environment which values, recognizes, and affirms the worth of each individual in our learning community. To help us reach our goal, we provide a very effective program for students who need additional support.

We call this program "Check In Check Out." Students involved in this program will check in with a staff member in the morning. At Check In, they receive a Soaring Spartans point card allowing them to receive points for being a safe, respectful, and responsible citizen of our school. The staff member and the student talk together, setting a goal for the student to have a positive day. As they go through the day, they will check in with each teacher to receive feedback. At the end of the day, they check out with a staff member who totals the points and discusses how the day went with the student. A copy of the Check in Check out Daily Progress Report (DPR) will go home each day with your child. We are requesting that parents review the DPR and discuss how responsible, respectful, and safe your child has been that day. Please support us by reviewing his/her DPR and highlighting his/her successes for the day. Once your child has achieved the goal on a consistent basis, they will be moving to self-monitoring which will be noted on their DPR card.

Your child has been chosen to participate in Check in Check out. Students are elected to be part of this program for a variety of reasons. The reason(s) your child was nominated to be in the program is/are highlighted below.

  • Staff Recommendation: Model student behavior, leadership & intrapersonal skills
  • Behavior Management Skills
  • New Students
  • Absence Concerns


I wanted to share our family's experience with the Sandburg Check In, Check Out program.  My son participated in the Soaring Spartans program during his 6th grade year. He has always been a bright student; when he got to middle school, I tried to let him figure things out like time management, schoolwork, and balancing it all.  He had close to straight As in elementary school, and we noticed in the beginning of 6th grade a big disconnect between his tests and homework grades.  He would do very well on the tests but would have missing assignments and failing grades on homework.  We also struggled with him and his focus on getting his work done.  It was torture getting his homework done.  It would take him hours for work that should have been done within an hour tops.   We reached out to Mr. Gail, and, by the end of that day, Ms. Connor had called me.  We talked, and she also pulled up his Powerschool grades and saw what we saw - a boy who could perform on the tests but the homework was not reflecting his abilities.  She mentioned the Check In and Check Out program, and we gave the go ahead.  While my son was unhappy about us placing him in the program, we knew if we didn't do something, it would just be worse as he progressed in Sandburg.  The program had a huge impact on him in a short time.  He started around January, and the changes were noticeable.  He no longer spent hours a night doing homework.  He learned to use his time in school as well as to focus on his tasks.  By early spring, Ms. Connor felt he was ready to move out of the program. The skills he learned in that short time have stayed with him.  I was quite nervous about 7th grade knowing that the workload was more than 6th.  He has continued to utilize his time in school and use his time wisely.  He juggles a lot - a travel sport, participation in cross country and  basketball at Sandburg, piano lessons, and school.   We don't have the struggles this year with homework dragging over several hours in an evening.  He rarely has missed turning in an assignment in 7th grade and when discussing the fact that he was in the program with some teachers during conferences, they would have never have guessed that he had time management issues or had struggled last year.  I have shared the story of this program with others and encouraged them to reach out if they felt that their child needed help.  The staff at Sandburg were so responsive to our concerns and found a solution for him.



As a universal intervention, PBIS can be supported at home.  By using this matrix you can help support more responsible behavior with your student.