Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) Policy


This policy is based on the Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) system for building positive relationships and managing behaviour. The purpose of the PBS approach is to promote and maintain a safe, respectful and orderly learning environment for students and staff and to provide all students with an opportunity to acquire the knowledge, skills and values to continue their education and to be citizens who contribute positively to the community.

The PBS framework provides a way for clear understandings and agreed positions, concerning behaviour and relationships to be established within the school community. The school’s motto, “Growth in Unity” invites us as a community to work towards peace, unity and harmony.

St. Joseph’s has developed three basic rules to protect the rights of every member of our school and to encourage responsibility. These are called the “Three Wise I’s”; I am safe, I am respectful, I am a learner. Fundamental to this is respect. We want our students to develop the quality of respect; a genuine respect for themselves, for others and for the environment.

This policy seeks to build, promote and utilise a united approach to supporting student behaviour. We want clear expectations, trusting relationships, positive communication and an emphasis on preventative measures and restorative practice within our school community. We understand that to achieve this we will need to continue to work together.


Promote Gospel values;
Develop positive self-esteem;
Encourage responsibility in students;
Apply our school framework consistently;
Promote and protect the rights and responsibilities of others; and
Model respectful behaviour


Who is Involved?

This policy is based on a whole-school agreement that has engaged students, parents, teaching and non-teaching staff and CSO personnel. Class teachers have had a crucial role in the implementation process. The process relies on a proactive approach of teaching, modelling and rewarding appropriate behaviour.

Non Classroom

Positive expectations and routines taught and encouraged 
Active supervision by all staff - Scan, move, interact 
Precorrections and reminders 
Positive reinforcement 


School-wide approach
Maximum structure and predictability in routines and environment 
Positively stated expectations posted, taught, reviewed, prompted and supervised. 
Maximum engagement through high rates of opportunities to respond, delivery of evidence-based instructional curriculum and practices 
Continuum of strategies to acknowledge displays of appropriate behaviour, including specific praise, group contingencies and Gotchas. 
Continuum of strategies for responding to inappropriate behavior, including specific, brief corrections for academic and social behaviour errors, differential reinforcement of other behaviour, planned ignoring, response/consequence, and timeout.

1. The Three Wise I’s

I am Safe 
I am Respectful 
I am a Learner 

2. Expectations Matrix

The expectations matrix (Appendix 1) provides specific points for student behaviour. These expectations were developed with consideration given to all areas in the school environment. Each week a focus area is selected from the matrix. The weekly focus is displayed in the assembly area, taught in the classroom and modelled. 

3. Displaying rules

The school rules are visible in the school grounds and are displayed in the assembly area and outside classroom block 1. School rules should be visible in each classroom (Appendix 2). A4 charts will be laminated and distributed for this purpose. These rules and routines provide the framework for desirable behaviour in our school. They protect rights and invoke responsibilities. Expectations will always need to be taught, supported and encouraged

4. Risks

Problems arise, however, when the primary focus of a school discipline program is placed upon the rule violation, and because of that, the human violation is ignored or minimised. Since the purpose of establishing rules is to provide for a safe, fair, just and orderly community, it is important that the underlying human dimension is not lost in our effort to be sure to follow the rules. (Classen, 2001) 

5. Communication

An outline of the PBS system will be included on the school website and in the newsletter sent home to each family in Term 1 of each school year. Each newsletter will contain the weekly focus area for the current and proceeding week. Parents will be asked to support the plan by discussing the content with their children. 

6. Awareness

Morning/weekly assemblies are an opportunity to build student’s understanding of PBS, particularly around the weekly focus area and to reinforce appropriate behaviour and develop clear expectations. 

7. Reward

Reward Day will be held weekly and students will redeem rewards from the reward chart (Appendix 3) based on their individual tally of ‘Gotchas’. Each time students receive a reward they are also rewarded with an award card at the weekly assembly. Two class award trophies for Positive Behaviour are also awarded at the weekly assembly. Students contribute to the development of the rewards chart. 

8. Managing behaviour

Teachers should refer to the 3M Ladder of Response (Appendix 4) as their guide to identifying and dealing with instances of inappropriate or disruptive behaviour. 

9. Model the behaviours you wish to see in your students

Use positive communication – calm voice, neutral body language
Balance the language of correction with the language of acknowledgment 
Catch them being good – acknowledge and praise appropriate behaviours when students least expect it using ‘Gotchas’ 
Ladder your responses to inappropriate behaviours from the least to the most intrusive using the 3M Ladder of Response.

10. Monitoring

Student behaviour that is considered to be in the moderate to major level of the 3M Ladder of Response should be recorded on the School Behaviour Office Referral Form (Appendix 5). 

11. Suspension

For serious offences that require the suspension or expulsion of a student refer to the diocesan Pastoral Care policy‘s Principles of Procedural Fairness. 

12. Corporal punishment

Is not permitted at St. Joseph’s for any reason. 


There is provision for ongoing professional development, the purchase of teacher reference material and classroom resources to support this policy.


This policy and plan should be evaluated for its effectiveness and involves all members of the school community. Last revision was 4 March, 2014.