School District Services
Student Behavioral Services
Where Students Learn How They Learn Best
Sometimes students have difficulty functioning in academic and social settings. Often teachers and staff don’t have enough time or expertise to solve for individual behavioral challenges. Working with the functions of behaviors, our specialists work with educators and parents of students with disabilities to formulate an intervention plan. Working with educators and parents, our team of professionals provides solutions to improve academic and social functioning.
What is Behavioral Services?
Behavioral services are a type of therapy or intervention plan that aims to help students who are struggling with behavior issues that are impacting their learning. Behavioral disorders are complex and difficult to understand at times, but often these behavioral challenges make it difficult for a student to function at school. A student’s performance academically as well as their ability to function in relationships with friends, teachers and family members can suffer because of behavioral issues. Yet children who struggle with these issues can still succeed and still need to feel understood, appreciated and accepted despite their challenges. Behavioral therapy seeks to help students overcome challenges with their behavior to better function in both their education and their everyday lives.
Behavioral services, or behavioral therapy, seeks to understand and modify behavior by looking at the causes and consequences of that behavior. By understanding the causes of behavior, therapists can help students respond differently to those causes and therefore improve the undesired behavior and help the student see a better outcome. Behavioral treatments also look to use positive reinforcement to teach and reward correct behavior, helping the student to learn better forms of functioning in and out of the classroom. Professionals in behavioral services use a variety of evidence-based treatments and methods and seek to create a customized plan for each student to help them improve their behavior in a way that works best for them.
Behavioral Health vs Mental Health
Overall the goal of behavioral services is to help a student achieve better behavioral health. This means the student is able to behave and function effectively in their learning environment. One important distinction to note is that behavioral health is not the same as mental health. Mental health can be an aspect of behavioral health and many mental health struggles can affect a student’s behavior. Mental health and behavioral health also encompass a lot of the same issues that a student may face. However, behavioral health is different in that behavioral health focuses on looking at the specific behaviors of the student and how those behaviors are affecting their mental and physical well-being. Mental health focuses more on the psychological condition of a student and any struggles they may be facing in that area. Often mental health conditions can result in behavioral health problems and changes in behavior can also help a student cope with and better manage their mental health conditions. In essence, these two aspects of wellness function together to help a student achieve better overall wellness.
Who Can Benefit from Behavioral Services?
Behavioral services exist to help students with a wide variety of needs, ages and abilities. For many children with a learning disability or who struggle with behavior due to any type of disability, behavioral services can help them learn to regulate themselves emotionally and to better function in a classroom or with their peers. Many people who struggle with autism spectrum disorder often benefit from behavioral services as well. Behavioral services can also address a wide variety of other needs including helping students who struggle with anxiety, depression, ADHD, substance abuse, and many other disorders. Children who are doing well academically and earning good grades can still benefit from behavioral services, especially if they have difficulty getting along well with others. In essence, any student who is struggling to behave effectively in the classroom or with other people may benefit from behavioral treatment. And because treatment plans can be customized to fit your child’s needs, you can work with professionals to find solutions that will help your child learn in the way they learn best. Overall, the goal of behavioral services is to help students gain effective behaviors early on that will help them both succeed in their education and also throughout their life.
Common Behavioral Service Approaches
One of the most common approaches to behavioral therapy is called Applied Behavior Analysis or ABA. ABA has been used to help students since the 1960’s and is a scientific, evidence-based methodology that seeks to understand how behavior works and how learning occurs. It then uses this understanding to help people create lasting behavior change. ABA has been often used to help students with autism spectrum disorder, but its principles can help a wide range of students and can address a wide variety of behaviors including negative behaviors in the classroom. ABA principles can also help students improve their study habits, motivation, relationship skills, physical and mental health habits, and even language and communication skills. ABA can be performed in both group and individual settings and there is no “one size fits all” approach to applied behavior therapy. ABA is not a set of concrete steps or actions but rather a collection of scientifically validated principles that can be applied to your student’s unique situation. Seeking advice from a trained ABA professional will help you create a plan that will best fit your student’s needs.
Who is Qualified to Administer Behavioral Services?
Behavioral therapy should be administered by a qualified professional in order to help your student have the best experience. Many types of professionals can help with behavioral health including school counselors, special education professionals and even social workers. However, specialized professionals in the field of behavioral health often have increased expertise and training that can further address your student’s needs. These types of professionals include behaviorists and behavior analysts or consultants, many of whom have pursued advanced degrees in special education and have obtained professional certifications in behavior analysis such as the BCBA professional certification. This additional training and experience allows behavior professionals to better diagnose specific behavior issues and to design more effective interventions to truly help your student succeed.
How Can I Access Behavioral Services For My Student?
Behavioral services can be administered through your child’s school system such as through school counselors or special education programs. Services or programs available may vary depending on the resources in your area. If you are a parent of a child struggling with behavioral issues, consider discussing your child’s needs with their teacher, principal and district. They can help you to understand your child’s behavior in the classroom and to discover what resources are available. You can also contact professional education research institutions in your area, such as Da Vinci Education and Research. These types of organizations exist to provide additional resources and expertise to school systems in order to help teachers and schools better serve students with behavioral needs. Consider discussing with your school system the use of a professional organization if needed or contact the professional institution directly to learn more about their services. Teachers and district administrators can also access behavioral service help through professional education organizations to help them with struggling students. Often teachers simply do not have enough time and resources to effectively deal with behavior needs and help all of the students in their classroom at the same time. Professional behavioral services can be a great asset to help these teachers focus on all of the students in the classroom while making sure a struggling student gets the individual help they need.
About Da Vinci Behavioral Services
Our professionals have extensive expertise in both behavior and academic methodologies to ensure each student receives a comprehensive education plan. We utilize traditional behavioral techniques and use a wide range of research based methodologies. Our approach serves a broad population of students ranging from spectrum based disorders to ADHD and executive functioning.
We liaise with the district to provide additional behavioral support for our students. Our methods and tools support the Individual Education Plan.
Working with Special Education Administrators we use our expertise to provide individualized instruction. Our structured plans for home and school provide consistency giving our students a solid foundation for self-regulation and supportive education.