The Stampede

Everyone Deserves Recognition – How PBIS is Changing School Culture

Alexann Wangeline and Savleen Binning

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Public Behavior Intervention Support, a new system created by Rodriguez to “change school culture and try to make a more positive environment,” as stated by English teacher and one of the members of the PBIS team, Ms. Bernie. The best thing about this new reward system? It doesn’t have to do with academics. Students get rewarded for being kind and following the “RHS way” – Responsible, Honorable, Safe – no matter their GPA or past behavior. PBIS is for “the kids that might not have the best grades and are in the middle” who frequently get overlooked and go unrecognized.  

According to leader of PBIS and counselor here at Rodriguez, Ms. Kotarsky, PBIS is not a new idea. PBIS is a global system used all over to promote a sense of unity and kindness among schools. Having it at her past school, Ms. Kotarsky knows the positive effect it has on students. “Even something small like being kind to someone you wouldn’t normally talk to makes a difference,” she claims.

Even being implemented for a few weeks, the student reaction is positive. Students enjoy getting recognized and awaiting the bi-weekly drawings to see if they are one of the winners. Even students who aren’t necessarily the exemplary AP student that is typically rewarded deserve to be appreciated and celebrated sometimes, which is exactly what PBIS is trying to do.

So, be kind. Be responsible. Be honorable. Even if you do not think it makes a difference. Because it does, and you might just win a prize for the difference you are making.


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Everyone Deserves Recognition – How PBIS is Changing School Culture