Frequent office referrals for behavior problems: an elementary school challenge

The purpose of this study was to examine strategies and interventions to help reduce the number of office referrals due to behavior problems. The intent was to study one elementary school to discover strategies and interventions for teachers and administrators to use at the elementary level to help reduce behavior problems. This study provides an overview of the literature on the need to reduce office referrals due to behavior problems. The literature addresses collaboration of stakeholders, the need for a plan, academic deficiencies, and early intervention as some of the suggestions and considerations for success. The methodology used in this study was the Ground Theory Design using a survey for classroom teachers and playground supervisors. Each survey consisted of four to five open-ended questions. The study was done at one elementary school serving grades kindergarten through fifth grade with a very diverse population in an older residential neighborhood. The findings from the elementary school researched were similar to the literature used in this study. Collaborating with all stakeholders, having a plan in place, and being proactive were common responses on the teacher and playground supervisor's surveys. Even though this was only one elementary school, it seems to be consistent with the literature and existing research available on reducing the number office referrals due to behavior problems. Key words: delinquent, behavior problems, elementary, discipline