Williams/Ledger Elementary School hosted OWL Family Night Thursday to introduce parents to the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports program.
Principal Marla Sullivan introduced Williams/Ledger to the program last year. The school has seen a dramatic drop in bad behaviors throughout the campus, said David Dees, OWL team leader.
A national initiative
The program is a national initiative that aims to reinforce a successful school atmosphere by focusing on and responding to positive rather than negative behavior.
“With that we have a reward system in place where the children, for meeting expectations, can earn what we call hoot loot which is kind of like school money,” Dees said. “And then every Friday, they can go to the school store we have on campus, called the OWL’S Nest, to purchase prizes or they can earn extra recess through their teachers.”
Family Night involved several contests where teachers and students were given the opportunity to win prizes for their class and extra hoot loot.
More than 600 students and their families were treated to hot dogs, snacks and drinks sponsored by the Parent Teacher Organization.
Guidance counselor Andrea Porter said parent involvement is the key to creating a successful student.
“We believe we are a partnership with parents,” she said. “When children see that our expectations are the same as at home, the child has a greater chance for success.”
A big school party
Miriam Weeden, mother of Molly Weeden, 6, described the event as a big party at school.
“It brings the community together and it also brings the kids together,” she said.
The program has been helpful for her daughter who now gets all As, Weeden said.
Molly said she has earned her hoot loot by “being quiet and getting good grades.”
Elaine Hayes and son Isaiah Shafik, 10, were there for some fun activities and also to support Isaiah’s class.
“It’s really good that they have a reward system,” Hayes said. “He’s a good kid anyway but I think it does motivate the kids to do well and to behave.”
Isaiah also is enjoying the program.
“It’s a good idea, the principal is doing a really good job,” Isaiah said.
Newer school students such as 4-year-old Malayna Baker also are enthusiastic about the program, said Catrina Jackson, Malayna’s mother.
“She loves it whenever she comes home with the hoot loot she’s always so excited,” she said.
“This school always comes out with different things to do and things to get the parents active.”