Positive Behaviour for Learning


The purpose of the Positive Behaviour Process (PBR) is to develop a school where every student has the opportunity to succeed. It is designed to help students think and act responsibly. No one can force you to learn, you just choose to learn. This program is all about learning to make the right choices.
This is not a new program for making students do what you tell them or controlling them in the conventional sense. PBR is all about preserving the integrity of the classroom for those doing the right thing. It is not about fixing the disruptive student.  PBR is more about how the teacher behaves in response to the disruption, rather than about how the teacher makes the disruptive student behave. 

The teacher’s job is to teach, not to control. PBR tells us we cannot control another person’s behaviour. 
  • If we try to control, we will often get counter-controlled. 
  • If we tell students what to do, we are doing the thinking. 
  • PBR says by asking the questions of students we get them to do the thinking. 
  • This is the beginning of responsible thinking and self-control. 
  • If the teacher is angry/upset/threatening, and the student appears nonchalant/relaxed then the teacher is ‘doing it wrong’. 
  • The student needs to be feeling discomfort. 
  • When the teachers is asking the questions – they will be firm and respectful, and non-judgmental in tone. They will never indicate disapproval. Shaming is not part of PBR. 
  • The teacher will ask, am I lecturing, in an effort to control or manage the relationship through questioning? 
  • Students can be taught to make good choices and to accept responsibility for their behaviour. 
  • The teacher needs to model the behaviour expected of students constantly.​

How Does the Positive Behaviour Process Help a School?

  • PBR ensures the real purpose of teaching and learning can proceed without persistent disruption.
  • PBR offers students a choice about what they want to do and assists them in taking responsibility for their behaviour.
  • PBR allows teachers and students to relate to each other respectfully when disruptive incidents occur.
  • ​PBR helps students learn the important life skills of compromise, negotiation and conflict resolution.

The Goals

  1. To think about the problem and see things more clearly
  2. To think about “Where am I in my life?”
  3. To help others who are not causing problems to get on with their work.
  4. To make the teacher’s job easier.
  5. Raise awareness that to miss out on a class, compounds the problem because you have to work doubly hard to catch up
  6. To get away from the situation, to calm down and reflect/think clearly
  7. To understand it is a safe place to come
  8. To understand that the PBR is not a place of humiliation or punishment
  9. To learn to be honest with yourself
  10. To learn someone cares, someone respects you and is willing to work with you until you succeed
  11. To learn it is possible to succeed and make things better and resolve one’s internal conflicts
  12. To learn that we do not violate others’ rights.

Are we achieving the following?

  1. Are they relying on us to solve their problems or are they learning to do this on their own?
  2. Are they blaming others for their behaviour or learning to take responsibility for what they do?
  3. Are they using ‘power’ to solve their problems as opposed to reason and co-operation?
  4. Are they focusing on what they think you want them to do and what happens to them if they don’t do it rather than what kind of person they want to be and how they are part of the whole school community?
  5. Are they focusing on avoiding consequences rather than finding a way to get what they want without infringing on the rights of others?
  6. Are they focusing on what reward they will get rather than becoming a responsible, respectful person?
  7. Are they learning whether we and other adults make all decisions at school, or are they an important part of the decision-making process?
The Positive Behaviour Process is based on Perceptual Control Theory. More information on Ed Ford’s books is available in the College library.

What happens with PBR in the classroom:

Teachers establish classroom rules. 

If a breach of the rules occurs, start using the process.
  1. Incident occurs
  2. The student is reminded of the rule
  3. Choice of behaviour
change behaviour
disrupt again, choose to go to the PBR.

The ‘Questions’

The Positive Behaviour Process encourages students to think about their behaviour.  ​Thinking is prompted by questions.

The ‘Process’

The ‘process’ in the classroom begins with the question: “What are you doing?” the student usually responds with the rule they have broken.

For example, speaking while the teacher is speaking. The teacher then continues with: What should you be doing? the student responds with the appropriate behaviour. eg. Listening to you/Doing my work etc. The teacher finishes with: What will happen if you disrupt again? The student responds with: I will choose to go to the PBR.

If the student disrupts again during that lesson, the teacher continues the process with: What are you doing? The student replies….
eg. Speaking to my friend. The teacher continues: What did you say would happen if you disrupted again? Student replies:
I will choose to go to the PBR. Teacher: What have you chosen to do? Student: Go to the PBR
Teacher: fills in the referral slip, stating the disruptions, and gives the slip to the student, who then comes to the PBR.  
  • When the student arrives at PBR, the supervisor/teacher will update Eminerva to confirm the student’s arrival at PBR.
  • The PBR teacher /supervisor will give the student a re-entry plan to complete. They may conference with the student if necessary.
  • At the next available 2nd half of lunch, the student will go to SAO to negotiate with the classroom teacher. After a successful negotiation, the student returns the plan to the PBR and receives a purple ‘Return to class slip’.
  • When the student returns to class they give the purple ‘Return to class slip’ to the classroom teacher. The student is not to return to that class until a plan has been negotiated and a slip issued.
Repeated visits to the PBR generally lead to intervention. 
Students who continue disrupting the Positive Behaviour Room will be sent home.
Re-entry to school will require a parent interview.

List of Automatics

Questions must be asked.
  • Failure to enter into the Positive Behaviour Process
  • Talking/disrupting during Assembly/Liturgies etc
  • Disrupting and exam/assessment
  • Being in an out of bounds area
  • Breaking of the “Hands Off” policy/ Physical contact
  • Aggression to staff (including swearing)
  • Unsafe behaviour in areas with specific safety rules
  • Obscene language directed at staff or students
  • Deliberate absence from class
  • Smoking, alcohol, drugs
  • Theft within the school environment (including excursions)
  • Interruption of the Positive Behaviour Process with another student
  • Throwing water, food or other objects
  • Any action which places themselves or others at risk of harm
  • Deliberate computer misuse (Technology Violation)​
​If a Student Refuses to Engage in the Positive Behaviour Process
  • The teacher will ask the question Are you going to work with me?
  • If the answer is YES: continue with the Positive Behaviour Process questions
  • If the answer is NO: A member of the College Leadership Team will remove the student who is refusing to engage in the PBR process.