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National Institute of Justice Studies Approaches to Improve School Safety
WASHINGTON – The Office of Justice Programs’ National Institute of Justice today published an article about NIJ-funded research confirming that access to interconnected resources improves school climate and student safety. With support from NIJ, researchers studied the Interconnected Systems Framework, a process to integrate holistic and mental health approaches to school safety, to address the underlying causes of negative behavior and replace punishment with efforts to develop positive behavior and social skills.
The Interconnected Systems Framework integrates two popular approaches, the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports and School Mental Health services, which address the underlying causes of misbehavior, including exposure to violence. Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports is a proactive approach that emphasizes intervention to promote positive behavior through a comprehensive holistic, evidence-based approach for preventing and reducing aggression and other problem behaviors in school. School-based mental health services focus on early identification and access to mental health support for students with behavioral problems and has been shown to significantly improve early identification, intervention, and access to care.
The work described in this article was supported by NIJ funding awarded to the University of South Carolina to produce the report, “Interconnecting PBIS and School Mental Health to Improve School Safety: A Randomized Trial,” by Mark D. Weist, Joni W. Splett, Colleen Halliday, Michael A. Seaman, Nick Gage, Katie Perkins, Kelly Perales, Elaine Miller, Kathryn McCollister, Darien Collins, Victoria Rizzardi and Christine DiStefano.
TITLE: “Interconnecting Mental Health and Behavioral Support Improves
School Safety, Study Says.”
AUTHOR: National Institute of Justice
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The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, advance racial equity in the administration of justice, assist victims and enhance the rule of law. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.