Positive Behavior Support (PBS)

  • Dear Parents, 

    Positive Behavior Support is a program that teachers and administrators in Sarasota County agreed upon district-wide to develop expectations that schools would use as a tool for teaching expected behaviors.  You will be able to remember Gulf Gate’s expectation with the following acronym, STARR. The letters in this acronym stand for Safe, Timely, Active Learners, Respectful, and Responsible.  

    The students at Gulf Gate Elementary School have been learning about school-wide behavioral expectations. These expectations have been agreed upon by the staff as an effective way to be proactive in managing behaviors.  The following information shows the expectation along with how the particular behaviors should look like at the school.  

    Safe - Keeping yourself and others from harm, injury, or risk 

    Timely - Students should be on time to school and class daily. 

    Active Learner - Active learners are involved and come to school prepared and ready to learn. 

    Respectful - Taking care of yourself, others and the environment. 

    Responsible - Doing what is expected at the right time 

    This approach to managing behavior is proactive and positive.  Students will be acknowledged for exhibiting the behaviors that we expect by receiving verbal and written praise, awards, positive notes and phone calls to parents, special privileges, certificates, and yellow tickets. 

    Please take this opportunity to talk to your child about the expectations at school and the importance of continuing to be a STARR every day.  With your continued support and involvement, Gulf Gate Elementary School will remain a school where students can excel in knowledge and character. 


    Michelle Miller, School Principal
    Teresa Morey, School Counselor

    Gulf Gate PBS Project Mission Statement


    To increase the capacity of Gulf Gate School staff to address problem behavior using Positive Behavior Support within a Response to Intervention framework.

    What we do

    Provide training and assistance to staff at Gulf Gate in the development and implementation of positive behavior supports at Tiers 1, 2, and 3.


    • Michelle Miller, Principal
    • Leigh Michalojko, Assistant Principal 
    • Laura Gamsby, Behavior Specialist
    • Teresa Morey, School Counselor

    Supportive Research

    There is a direct correlation between the amount of positive reinforcement given for appropriate classroom behavior to the reduction of time given to reprimanding students for inappropriate behavior. An effective tool that teachers can share with one another is Positive Behavior Support (PBS). Positive Behavior Support offers many techniques, strategies, and modifications for both behavior and academic issues that promote an effective, orderly classroom climate. Teachers should consistently utilize a positive behavior support plan that includes prevention strategies and a menu of responses to anticipated misbehaviors.

    Teacher Tip

    We should be reinforcing our students at the 7:1 ratio of 7 positives to 1 negative.


    Gulf Gate Elementary PBS Plan


    Students are expected to make good choices throughout the school day and understand that their choices result in consequences. 

    • When good choices are made, good things happen.
    • When poor choices are made, problems happen.


    1. Students will behave in a safe manner for themselves and others.
    2. Students will arrive to school on time.
    3. Students will be active learners.
    4. Students are expected to be respectful to others and our school.
    5. Students will be responsible for their own behavior and choices.


    1. Hallways are quiet zones.  Students are to walk in a quiet line at all times.
    2. Students are to keep their hands, feet, and objects to themselves.
    3. Students are to speak kindly to everyone.
    4. Students are to respond to directions the first time they are given.


    1. Actively supervise all students.
    2. Communicate behavioral and academic concerns with students and parents in a timely manner.
    3. Be on time.
    4. Consistently teach, reward and reinforce the student expectations. 


    1. Actively supervise your children for safety purposes by monitoring student expectations.
    2. Ensure students arrive to school on time daily for the full day.
    3. Read and sign agenda book daily.
    4. Speak kindly to everyone. 


    1. Students will enter and leave the cafeteria in an orderly, quiet, manner.
    2. Students are to talk quietly with their friends at their own table.
    3. Students are to clean their area before they leave and throw away any garbage.
    4. Students will leave food and other cafeteria items in the cafeteria.
    5. Students are to remain in their seat. 


    The Gulf Gate Elementary School learning community will provide positive reinforcement to students who make good choices.  Faculty and staff will seek out students being good and provide: 

    1. Praise 
    2. Tickets 
    3. Positive notes to parents 
    4. Positive phone calls to parents 
    5. Special privileges  
    6. Good Choices Certificate 
    7. Student of the Week Certificate  


    Each day, students from the Gulf Gate Elementary School learning community will begin on Level 0.  When bad choices are made, the following procedures will be followed:

    Level 1: Warnings

    The teacher will: 

    1. Redirect the student’s behavior. 
    2. If behavior continues, provide a verbal warning and a specified consequence.  

    Level 2: Consequences

    The teacher will:

    1. Relocate the student within the classroom to a new area (in close proximity to the teacher) to continue work.  Be sure to restate their current expectations.  Students will remain in the new area for no longer than:  
      • 10 minutes for grades K-2. 
      • 15 minutes for grades 3-5. 
    2. Provide next level consequences.  

    Level 3: Consequences

    The teacher will: 

    1. Move the student to a co-teacher’s classroom. 
    2. The student will be given a Behavior Planning Form (BPF) to complete. 
      • What bad choice did you make? 
      • What was your consequence? 
      • List at least four better choices that you could make in the future?  
    3. Student will remain with co-teacher for no longer than: 
      • 10 minutes for grades K-2. 
      • 15 minutes for grades 3-5. 
    4. Teacher will discuss Behavior Plan with the student. 
    5. Missed assignments will be made up as homework.  

    Level 4: Consequences

    The teacher will: 

    1. Contact parent to discuss the problem and officially warn the parent and student of possible future consequences (level 5).  

    Level 5: Consequences

    The teacher will:

    1. Complete and submit discipline referral form to principal.

    Defiant Behavior

    • Failure to follow a reasonable request. 
    • Cheating, forging, plagiarism, etc. 
    • Minor stealing or hiding peer’s personal property. 
    • Teasing, taunting, instigating behaviors, mocking others. 
    • Inappropriate behavior in structured and non-structured areas. 
    • Possession or use of personal electronic toys: gameboys, walkmans, iPods, etc. 
    • Disrupting classes or office. 
    • Bickering between students. 
    • Bodily noises. 
    • Running and screaming in the halls. 
    • Unsafe use of equipment and materials.  

    Aggressive Behavior

    • Verbal aggression towards others: name calling, swearing, put-downs, sexual innuendoes, etc. 
    • Physical aggression towards others that does not leave a mark or blood: horseplay that incites a reaction, throwing objects, in others’ personal space, pulling out chair from under others, etc. 
    • Minor property damage – personal or school: overturning furniture, tampering with others’ work, knocking stuff off desk in anger. 
    • Inappropriate language or discussion: lewd language in halls or building, talking about off campus usage of drugs, partying, etc. 
    • Disrespecting school property. 
    • Insubordination: mocking or sarcasm with teachers/staff.

    Zero Tolerance: Immediate Referral

    • Serious physical aggression to anyone on school property during school activities: leaves marks or blood, fights, physical or sexual assaults, intentional harm with chemicals, equipment, school materials/supplies and intentional throwing of objects that could cause physical harm or property damage, etc. 
    • Bullying and victimization: targeted, repeated incidents that include aggressive collaboration by students, the use of racial, ethnic, religious, gender or handicapped slurs.
    • Sexual harassment or sexual misconduct: threats, sexual gesture, inappropriate touching, reports of or exposing self to others, gross sexual language, etc. 
    • Possession of or looking at sexually explicit material: magazines, internet sites, etc.
    • Serious verbal or written threats to students or others: verbal statements to kill, shoot, injure, bringing weapons to school, fight, or bringing an illegal substance to school. Possession and/or trafficking of: suspected drugs, alcohol, look-alike paraphernalia, inhalants, attending school or a related function intoxicated, or suspicion of drug or alcohol use. 
    • Any threats toward: teachers or staff, their property, or significant others on or off campus (written, verbal, physical actions, gestures, etc.) 
    • Intentional serious property damage – school or personal: fire setting, vehicle tampering, food tampering, vandalism, etc. 
    • Possession of weapons or look-alikes: guns, explosive materials, objects used as weapons, mace, pepper spray, creating a weapon, knives, etc. 
    • Serious stealing or attempts to steal. 
    • Intentional elimination of bodily fluids or waste. 
    • Leaving the school building without appropriate authorization.