Office Conduct Referral Systems and Data Monitoring
Having accurate and up to date data available for review is essential information for the Universal Team. Reviewing office conduct referral data to determine standout patterns and trends provides the team with a clear intervention planning focus. There are two parts to data monitoring: obtaining the needed data and using the data.
Office versus class managed infractions. In order to conduct an analysis of office conduct referral data, the school team needs to ensure that the data they are reviewing is credible. Inconsistencies in how staff use office referral procedures can skew the data and impact the decision making process. Having well-defined procedures for sending a student to the office will greatly improve the credibility and consistency of the data. The very first decision a team needs to make is what constitutes a class/area managed infraction and what constitutes an office managed infraction. The school team should ensure that the following are in place:
- A decision tree chart that details step by step how staff and administrators should handle an office conduct referral.
- A form that is sent to the office (either with the student or electronically) that includes all the necessary information (e.g., location of incident, type of infraction, etc.) for decision making.
- Articulated definitions that guides staff to determine if the infraction meets the criteria for ‘redirectable – handle in the classroom’ or ‘office required’.
- Professional development for staff that reviews all the procedures and forms.
Entering data into a database. Once a student is sent to the office, there needs to be a system that captures and records the information into a data base. Some commercial systems used by districts include a discipline component, others do not. Unfortunately, most of the popular applications used by districts do not sufficiently accept or report back data in the form that teams will need. Thus, teams will need to determine what their district system can provide and develop a strategy for tracking information not available through the district data base. The following are the key data questions:
- Where are referrals most often occurring?
- When are referrals most often occurring?
- Who is referring?
- What types of infractions are most often occurring?
- What is the average number of referrals per day per month?
- What percentage of students are receiving 0-1; 2-3; 4-6; 7 or more referrals?
- What demographic patterns are associated with referrals?
Using data for decision making. Data is most usable when summarized. It is very difficult to ‘eye’ a multi-page list of infractions and accurately pull out the standout patterns. When summarized into distinct categories and put into a graph, standout patterns are easy to discern. Having a system for taking raw data and turning it into graphs is an important action step for the team. The School Wide Information System (available at www.PBISAPPS.org) is a fee for service web based system that is widely considered the most user friendly application for generating discipline data graphs for PBIS decision making. If SWIS is not an option for you at this time, you might consider the NJ PBSIS OCR Excel template. The template is not nearly as sophisticated as SWIS, but it will provide you with graphs for some basic data inquiry questions.
Set Up an Office Conduct Referral System
Tools and Resources
|Develop an Office Conduct Referral Flow Chart. Having a decision tree and flowchart will improve consistent use of your school's conduct referral procedures. Use this template as a starting point for (a) determining how staff determine if an infraction is class or office managed and (b) using the appropriate procedures when referring students to the office.|
|Have a process to establish prior intervention. Many conduct referrals to the office begin with small infractions of classroom rules or the code of conduct. It is helpful to have a plan that structures for teachers how to respond to and document the occurrence of 'redirectable' behaviors. In doing this, there is greater clarity about what is managed in the classroom versus what goes to the office. The sample form can be customized and illustrates a process for documenting patterns of repeated infractions.|
|Have a data rich form for major infractions. Some situations require that the student goes immediately to the office. When this level of action is taken, staff need a way to document information that will be important to decision making. The sample provided is a major infraction form. The data fields are consistent with the decision making information the Universal Intervention team will need when they look at school-wide data.|
Document and Use Data
Tools and Resources
|Have the right graphs and information available. The Standout Data Pattern Tip Sheet provides Universal Teams with the data question, the type of graph needed and what to look for in graphed data. This is a helpful resources for teams just learning how to use office conduct referral data in their decision making process.|
|Have a process for graphing data. Typically, one or two personnel are identified as the data managers. Data managers do not always have to be on the Universal Team, it is helpful though if they are present during meetings to answer questions about data. Office Conduct Referral data (OCR) should be graphed each month and shared with the Universal Team and the school staff. The NJ PBSIS Excel template provides is one option for tracking OCR data. Depending on what information the district data base can provide, it may be necessary to have a paper/pencil method to tally data in target categories. The tally worksheet is an easy to use tool for tracking necessary information. These tallies are then summed up and entered into the Excel template.|
|Review conduct referral data monthly. The Universal team should have a standard data review item on the agenda each month. The tool provided offers guiding questions the team should ask each month and a template for developing an intervention to address the standout patterns.|