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Michael Shimoura, Stephanie Flores-Koulish, Ph.D.

Teachers' Phenomenological Experiences and the PBIS Value System

As of 2019, more than 27,000 schools across the United States have implemented the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports system, better known as PBIS. Since the 1980s, PBIS has gained notoriety for its effective framework that adopts evidence-based interventions to support academic and behavioral concerns for students. The foundations of PBIS can be traced back to the theoretical roots of behaviorism, operant conditioning, and token economies. Within the context of education, each of these frameworks is laden with inherent assumptions and values about how students are expected to operate inside the school. In order better understand how these notions manifest, this study seeks to explore how teachers’ relationships with their students are constituted, based on their perspectives of the PBIS value system. This will be accomplished employing a qualitative approach, utilizing an existential-phenomenological methodology and thematic coding. Interviews will be conducted with various staff members of an elementary school to explore the underlying dimensions of the teacher-student relationship.

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