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This document describes the National Center for School Engagement's 21 ways to engage students in school. It also describes best practices for improving student attendance, achievement, and attachment.

Solving problems and responding to life’s demands requires thinking skills. If a child doesn’t have the skills to handle a problem or expectation adaptively, the result will likely be some form of maladaptive or challenging behavior. This inventory tool helps identify the chronic problems adults have with the child or the demands that trigger the child (triggers and unsolved problems) and the skills the child lacks that s/he would need to handle those unsolved problems/triggers more adaptively (skill deficits).

March 2006

While some students drop out because of significant academic challenges, most dropouts are students who could have, and believe they could have, succeeded in school. This survey of young people who left high school without graduating suggests that, despite career aspirations that require education beyond high school and a majority having grades of a C or better, circumstances in students’ lives and an inadequate response to those circumstances from the schools led to dropping out.

In this paper, the authors propose a model of the prosocial classroom that highlights the importance of teachers’ social and emotional competence (SEC) and well-being in the development and maintenance of supportive teacher-student relationships, effective classroom management, and successful social and emotional learning (SEL) program implementation. This model proposes that these factors contribute to creating a classroom climate that is more conducive to learning that promotes positive developmental outcomes among students.

Productive classroom communities that demonstrate good behavior are developed, they do not happen on their own. Expect to deal with maladaptive behaviors, especially in the first weeks of school. This resource provides teachers with a suggested approach to discipline during the first few weeks of school.


This article considers the practical, conceptual, and empirical foundations of an early identification and intervention system for middle-grades schools to combat student disengagement and increase graduation rates in our nation’s cities. Many students in urban schools become disengaged at the start of the middle grades, which greatly reduces the odds that they will eventually graduate.

This worksheet and cheat sheet provide sample questions for counseling children with behavioral issues.

March 2007

New Hampshire has been recognized for its innovative use of data collection and analysis as the key to unlocking the dropout problem. In their program model titled Achievement in dropout Prevention and Excellence (APEX II), participating high schools are developing dynamic data collection systems at the school level.


This report offers a first school-level look at how early warning systems are being implemented. The research team visited middle and high schools in cities across the country to observe how they are using EWIs to monitor and respond to student needs.

The best technique for reducing classroom behavior problems is to establish effective routines and procedures. This is most effective when a teaching team agrees upon a few common routines/procedures, so students have a consistent experience from class to class. This tool suggests several possible routines and procedures for teachers to implement in the classroom.

This article reviews research concerning the causes of children with oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and the antecedents that trigger oppositional and defiant behavior. Drawing from clinical experience, the authors present a model to alter theses antecedents and offer a wide variety of practical techniques for preventing and responding to oppositional behavior in the classroom.

When a student breaks a rule and we implement a consequence, whether we realize it or not, we may be attacking his/her dignity. We must keep the mindset that our students do well if they can, and when they can’t it is because of a lagging skill coupled with an unresolved problem that needs to be solved so he/she can thrive. This document provides teachers with a list of suggested classroom management strategies to ensure students are respected, protected, and held accountable

The most effective, child-centered classroom management strategies successfully redirect the behavior of off-task students without specifically addressing the inappropriate behavior. This document identifies 11 such strategies for effective behavior interventions.

The most effective, child-centered classroom management strategies successfully redirect the behavior of off-task students without specifically addressing the inappropriate behavior. This worksheet provides users with a simple template for identifying techniques to implement 11 strategies for effective behavior interventions.

September 2010

This Early Warning System (EWS) Implementation Guide is a supporting document for schools and districts that are implementing the National High School Center’s Early Warning System (EWS) Tool v2.0.