Positive Behaviour Support

A brief guide for schools

Mark Wakefield and Sharon Paley: BILD

The booklet is intended to be a quick guide for teachers, classroom assistants and other staff working in school about the key principles of Positive Behaviour Support (PBS). The booklet is part of a series of short guides published by BILD.

There are descriptions of the philosophy behind PBS, what we mean by ‘behaviour that challenges’ and positive strategies/action in the classroom.

The booklet forms a positive, precise and compact guide to responding to difficult and hard to manage behaviours which result from unmet needs and place the student, staff and other students at risk. Mark and Sharon have done a great job and this book should be essential reading for everyone in school who needs a toolkit of positive responses to challenging needs.

A niggle. The books brevity is both its strength and its weakness. John Clements’ phrase
“The reasons we do the things we do are messy and murky...Most behaviours are the result of the interactions of several factors, only some of which we will understand” should remind us that difficult behaviour defies a simplistic approach. The booklet (with only 24 pages) probably doesn’t do the messiness and the murkiness of the topic justice.

Another niggle. The price. This is a great little book and ALL teachers should read it. It’s short enough so no arguments over the amount of TIME it might take to read but it’s hard to justify its £7.00 price tag.

It’s hard to disagree though with the penultimate paragraph– Mark and Sharon remind us that behaviour management is not the goal – the goal is no longer needing it! This will take leadership, workforce development and empowerment. Bring it on!

Hazel Ratcliffe and Chris Barson