Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Peck Full Service Community School (Holyoke, Mass.), Behavior therapy, Operant behavior, Intensive psychotherapy, Qualitative research, Behavior management, Positive behavioral interventions, Public schools, Response to Intervention [RtI], Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports [PBIS], Problem children-Behavior modification


Students presenting chronic behavioral challenges are few, yet they account for disproportionately high numbers of disciplinary referrals. These small numbers of students greatly impact the educational, behavioral, and socio-emotional outcomes of the entire student population and the functioning of the school as a whole. These students often respond in behaviorally undesired ways to their complex, unaddressed needs and to the environmental factors outside of their control. This pattern becomes especially pervasive in urban schools, where students face far greater challenges than in other settings. The typically used measures to address their behaviors often prove relatively ineffective and have the potential to be punitive, reactive, and highly inefficient. As a result, these students continue to exhibit behavioral challenges, which is detrimental to their own learning and all other students' educational outcomes. Having students' unaddressed needs and general student population's wellbeing in mind, Peck Full Service Community School in Holyoke, Massachusetts implemented a comprehensive system of behavioral support for students with chronic behavioral challenges. This study is an evaluation of the Intensive Behavioral Support program, with the goal of identifying the benefits of this type of support in comparison to the typically used behavioral interventions.




iii, 106 pages. Thesis (M.S.W.)--Smith College School for Social Work, 2015. Includes bibliographical references (pages 90-96)

Limited Access until August 2020