Amy GillFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Margaret E Ackerman


Attendance Rates Middle SchoolOffice Discipline Referrals, Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports, Student Achievement


Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Educational Leadership | Educational Methods | Educational Psychology | Other Education


When the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, and more recently the College and Career Ready Performance Index, was put into effect, schools felt pressure to increase student achievement and bring up attendance rates in order to make adequate yearly progress or now high index scores. Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) is a proactive approach that many schools have implemented in an attempt to decrease disruptive student behavior and possibly increase student attendance. The purpose of this quasi-experimental causal comparative study was to examine the impact of the treatment of PBIS, with its basis in behavioral theory, on office discipline referrals and student attendance rates. Data was collected and analyzed for over 2,000 students in rural southeast Georgia through Infinite Campus and PowerSchool. Using data from the 2011-2014 school years, the study attempted to answer if there is an impact on both office discipline referrals and student attendance rates for middle school students participating in PBIS as compared to middle school students not participating in PBIS. Each null hypothesis was analyzed separately using chi-square testing and an independent samples t-test. The results of the study show that there was an impact on attendance rates for the treatment group, but that same impact was not evidenced on office discipline referrals or attendance rates, when controlling for gender. Recommendations for future research include an examination of the factors that contribute to the decline in the impact of PBIS at the middle school level, and the impact of PBIS on different levels of office discipline referrals, office discipline referrals at tier 1, tier 2, and tier 3 separately, and the impact on different levels of absences.