In order to obtain the maximum benefit from an educational program, students must learn to manage their own behavior successfully. Since most students arrive at our school with difficulties in self-management of behavior, the MRA program is designed to externally manage student behavior and concurrently to teach strategies of self-control.
Student behavior is managed through a series of incentives (daily break, special trips, free omelet on Friday, etc.) and escalating consequences for inappropriate behavior (restricted lunchroom, no activity, etc.) on a level system. Students work to achieve each level by earning points through developing and achieving personal goals related to behavior and schoolwork. Teachers award points indicating positive completion of each class period and percentages are tallied weekly.
Self-management skills are taught in each classroom and in our Mediation Center. Students are counseled regarding their behavior and taught self-evaluation skills. Emphasis is placed on developing strategies for coping with daily stressors and on resolving conflicts. Counseling and support are continuously available through the Mediation Center.
Serious behavioral difficulties that cannot be resolved quickly in the classroom are referred to the Mediation Center. The student receives counseling regarding the behavior and completes a ten-minute time-out. Staff can request closure with a student and this must be completed before the student returns to his/her regular schedule.
Some behaviors (smoking, disrespect, minor physical conflicts, repeated disruptions) may require an in-school suspension. In-school suspension consists of restriction to the Mediation Center for the entire school day. Students are expected to complete assignments provided by their teachers and suspension learning packets.
Students with frequent disruptive behavior will be on the red level, which is most restrictive. Serious behavior incidents (assault, theft, drug possession, property destruction) may result in out-of-school suspensions. Such behaviors will also result in criminal charges.
Mr. Boyle, Mediation Specialist
A Mediation Center is staffed by a mediation monitor and a teacher. Students who have conflicts with peers, issues with staff or concerns that prevent them from being successful in class may request a voluntary time-out. Staff use their discretion as to whether it be outside the classroom, in an adjoining classroom, or in the Mediation Center. Students may also be referred to the Mediation Center due to behavioral problems that cannot be worked out in the classroom. A student may need a time-out to work on resolving the conflict. More serious issues are referred to the student's counselor.