Administrators LEAD & MANAGE MY SCHOOL
Exemplary and Promising
Safe, Disciplined and Drug-Free Schools Programs 2001

Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools Expert Panel
Archived Information

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Promising Programs

Let Each One Teach One Mentor Program

Let Each One Teach One Mentor Program is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

Let Each One Teach One (LEOTO) Mentor Program is specifically for at-risk, black male adolescents. The goals of the program center on increasing the academic success of students. The program measures its effectiveness by monitoring improved grades, enhanced self-efficacy, improved behavioral conduct, improved self-perceptions, fewer office referrals, fewer suspensions, and improved attendance.

Black youths in America, especially males, have an urgent need for the advancement of strategies and interventions for overcoming obstacles to healthy development and achievement. This program incorporates concepts and instruments for self-efficacy, including modeling--providing a role model mentor to effect changes in academic success. This program and its accompanying study represent the beginning of a research area that empirically addresses whether mentoring enhances academic attainment and success in school for a minority population.

Weekly sessions last 60 minutes. Currently, mentors are brought to the mentee's schools, where they meet from 3 to 4 p.m. The duration of the intervention sessions currently ranges from 16 to 20 weeks. This project has now extended downward to assist elementary students. Mentors are currently multiethnic, with over 85 percent black males and females. Mentors are eligible for community service Book Scholarship awards.

Program Quality

The goals for this program were found to be appropriate for the identified population and were effectively designed for a very specific audience. The content of this program was found by reviewers to be strongly focused on the actual relationship between mentor and youth. Supporting research in the submission reflected the importance of this relationship for the target group.

Evidence of Efficacy

Reviewers concluded that the evaluation of the LEOTO Mentor Program had many strengths and identified statistically significant treatment effects on teacher ratings of conduct at the immediate post-test, although the research design had a short follow-up post-test period that was less than one year post-baseline. Methodologically sound evaluation components included the use of a quasi-experimental, partially randomized design with a wait-list control group and an at-risk rating scale to select the most high-risk youths. Reviewers found that the design was strong enough to eliminate threats to internal validity when comparing the outcomes of the control group and the two treatment groups and that the three groups were statistically compared on demographic measures as well as outcome measures at pre-test. The evaluation used well-known measures of their constructs of interest and provided three different data sources: teacher, self-report, and official records. Analytic techniques were appropriately matched to the research design and type of data used in the evaluation.

Fifty-five males in sixth through eighth grade participated in the study and comprised two treatment groups and a wait-list control group. Treatment Group 1 received mentoring intervention characterized by support and self-regulation; Treatment Group 2 was characterized solely by support intervention. Students were paired with high-achieving male mentors from two high schools. Treatment dyads occurred on eight consecutive weeks with dependent variables measured prior to the first mentoring session and again after the eighth. Results showed statistically significant effects favoring Treatment Group 1 over the wait-list group on the outcome measures of self-efficacy, grade point average, and teacher conduct ratings. No significant differences were found between Treatment Groups 1 and 2.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

Training for this program consists of helping skills, self-regulation development, goal setting and monitoring, and strategies for helping with academic areas. Transportation costs (school buses) range from $400 to $800 for a 16- to 20-week session, depending on the proximity of the participating schools. Supplies and reinforcements for students who reach set goals (materials needed during the mentoring sessions that are not available through the schools) range from $200 to $300. The cost for the community service Book Scholarship awards ranges from $2,000 to $4,000, depending on the number of eligible mentors; donations for these awards are sought. A psychologist coordinates the project two and a half days a week and his or her salary must be factored into the final cost. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Vicki Tomlin
Let Each One Teach One Mentor Program
Denver Public Schools

4051 S. Wabash St.
Denver, CO 80237

Telephone: 303-796-0414
Fax: 303-796-8071


Linking the Interests
of Families and Teachers

Linking the Interests of Families and Teachers is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

Linking the Interests of Families and Teachers (LIFT) is a universal prevention program that targets for change those child and parent behaviors considered most relevant to the development of adolescent delinquent, violent, and related behaviors. Specifically addressed are a child's oppositional, defiant, and socially inept behaviors and a parent's discipline and monitoring behaviors. The three major components of the program are classroom-based child social and problem-solving skills training, playground-based behavior modification, and group-delivered parent training. The program is designed for delivery to first-grade and fifth-grade children and their parents.

LIFT interventions target both children and parents to affect child problem behaviors and parent discipline and monitoring. Elementary school is the first point at which most children enter a service system that includes a broad cross section of the population, and is therefore the ideal setting for providing a population-level intervention relevant to children.

Classroom activities, sometimes in the form of playground activities, occur for one hour, twice a week for 10 weeks. Parents receive training, either after school or in the evenings. Sessions are held for two hours, once a week for six weeks. The entire cycle of program components takes 10 weeks, but communication is fostered throughout the school year. Curricula, instructions to trainers, videotapes, and handouts are available for classroom and parent components.

Program Quality

LIFT addressed known risk-factor behaviors through carefully researched processes. Reviewers found the program's goal clearly stated and highlighted the program's identification of the elementary school years as the important time to address the development of these behaviors. Reviewers found the literature background provided to be based on a sound theoretical framework. Targeting the three domains of self, family, and school was also found by reviewers to be an effective way to increase protective factors. The parent component was effectively informed by the parents' identification of behaviors they would like addressed, thus initiating buy-in for the parents.

Evidence of Efficacy

Reviewers found the LIFT evaluation to be an excellent example of a rigorous, randomized design with multiple sources of confirmatory data. They concluded that the program demonstrated important effects on outcome variables, despite concerns about attrition rates, the lack of reporting of levels of significance in some cases, small effect sizes on some outcomes, and questions about how the program fit into the schools. The evaluation study was a controlled trial of 12 randomly chosen elementary schools located in neighborhoods considered "at risk" for delinquency. The LIFT group comprised all first- or fifth-grade students in six randomly chosen elementary schools. The control group consisted of all first- or fifth-grade students in six randomly chosen elementary schools. Assessment measures included microanalytic observations on the playground, with observers blind to group status; microanalytic observations of family interaction in the laboratory or home setting; a social competence and school adjustment scale; a teacher questionnaire; a child behavior checklist; official police records; and an interview with the child.

The program reported small to large effect sizes, showing that immediately after the intervention, LIFT students in grades one and five decreased their physical aggression toward classmates on the school playground. Also, mothers of LIFT students in grades one and five decreased their negative verbal comments to their children. A small effect size was reported, showing that LIFT students in grades one and five were perceived by teachers as demonstrating more positive social behaviors to other students within the classroom setting one year after the intervention. During the three-year period following the intervention, LIFT students in grade one were statistically significantly less likely to show an increase in the severity of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder symptomatology as perceived by teachers. The program also used odds ratios to demonstrate that LIFT students in grade five were less likely to be reported by teachers as associating with peers with behavior problems, to be arrested by police, and to report patterned alcohol use or marijuana use during the three-year period after the intervention.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

Training in leading the parent training and the classroom components ranges from 15 to 30 hours, depending on the experience of the trainer. Playground personnel can be trained in five hours. The major costs for the program can be subsumed within the regular budget of an on-staff school psychologist who is engaged in social skills and parent training. A half-time position dedicated to LIFT activities is more than sufficient for a broad-based program delivery. Additional costs for LIFT are initial training costs, home visits, child care during parent training, compensation for playground monitors (if necessary), and manuals and videotapes. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

J. Mark Eddy
Linking the Interests of Families and Teachers
Oregon Social Learning Center

160 East 4th Ave.
Eugene, OR 97401

Telephone: 541-485-2711
Fax: 541-485-7087

E-mail: marke@oslc.org

Web site: http://www.oslc.org/


Lions-Quest Skills for Adolescence

Lions-Quest Skills for Adolescence is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

Lions-Quest Skills for Adolescence is a comprehensive youth development program that brings together educators, parents, and members of the community to support the development of life and citizenship skills in young adolescents in grades six to eight. The program comprises five key components that address different aspects of young people's lives: 1) school curriculum, 2) parent involvement, 3) positive school climate, 4) community involvement, and 5) school staff training and follow-up support. The program is school-based and intended for use in a variety of school settings with youths of diverse ethnicity and socioeconomic status.

Skills for Adolescence is based on the rationale that a nurturing environment in which young people can learn critical life skills supports the development of positive behaviors and reduces the risk for problem behaviors, such as violence and substance abuse.

The classroom curriculum consists of 102 skill-building sessions over three years that are offered in 12 configurations and formats, from a minimum implementation model of a nine-week, 40-session mini-course to a maximum implementation model of a multiyear program with all 102 sessions. The 45-minute sessions are recommended for delivery no less often than every other day. Materials for the program include Skills for Adolescence Teachers' Resource Guide, Changes and Challenges Student Book, The Surprising Years Parent Book, and Supporting Young Adolescents Parent Meeting Guide. A program evaluation kit provides strategies and tools for conducting a needs assessment and assessing positive youth development. Materials include a lesson design for reviewing specific drugs of concern to local communities that are not part of the core program.

Program Quality

Reviewers rated this program highly for its clear goals and strong rationale. They also noted that the skill-building activities tied in with research and clearly contributed to the attainment of the stated goals. According to reviewers, program content and examples took into consideration the diverse needs of students, and content delivery took into account multiple learning styles.

Evidence of Efficacy

Reviewers agreed that Skills for Adolescence reported relevant evidence of efficacy based on a methodologically sound evaluation. They noted that the program used an evaluation design that controlled for pre-test differences and reliable and valid outcome measures. The program presented evidence from two studies.

The first study was a quasi-experimental, pre-post comparison group design using a convenience sample with a random selection of sixth- through eighth-grade classrooms and a comparison group based on teacher judgments of comparability with students in the treatment classrooms. The treatment group consisted of 583 students in 12 schools throughout the country, and the comparison group consisted of 299 students from the same 12 schools. Statistically significant results were demonstrated in favor of the treatment students on the drug use survey and knowledge test measures, including higher levels of perceived risk or harm to the students' health for all substances; lower rates of beer, liquor, and chewing tobacco use; and lower rates of intent to use beer and liquor in the future.

The second study used a quasi-experimental, pre-post comparison group design with the experimental group receiving the program integrated into language arts or social studies classes and the comparison group receiving traditional coursework in the subjects. During the 1993-94 school year, 12 inner-city middle schools provided equivalent research-condition classrooms of seventh-graders, with principals' random assignment of teachers to research groups. In the 1994-95 school year, eighth-graders in 14 inner-city middle schools participated in the study. Year-one findings included statistically significant gains in knowledge and attitudes about ways to deal with peer conflicts and increases in grade point averages in favor of the experimental group. Year-two findings yielded statistically significant results, including reductions in misconduct and gains in knowledge of anger management in favor of the experimental group. Follow-up results showed statistically significant program effects related to maintenance of the suppression of misconduct and knowledge of how to manage peer conflicts.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

To ensure successful implementation of Skills for Adolescence, participation in either the two- or the three-day staff development workshop is required for those teaching the program. Follow-up professional development opportunities are offered in the form of workshops that teach "best practices" for instruction in life skills. An extensive, 10-day train the trainer program prepares local personnel to conduct their own staff development. Toll-free telephone technical support is also available through the developer. In the first year, the cost for Skills for Adolescence is $450 per teacher, including a two-day pre-service workshop, a grade-specific curriculum set, and student materials for a class of 25. After the first year, the cost is only for additional student materials at a rate of $5.95 per student. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Greg Long
Lions-Quest Skills for Adolescence
Quest International

1984 Coffman Rd.
Newark, OH 43055

Telephone: 740-522-6400
Fax: 740-522-6580

E-mail: gregl@quest.edu

Web site: http://www.quest.edu/


Lions-Quest Working Toward Peace

Lions-Quest Working Toward Peace is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

Lions-Quest Working Toward Peace (WTP) is a school-based, comprehensive program designed to teach and reinforce a repertoire of anger management and conflict resolution skills. It brings together the school, the family, peers, the community, and the media in a network of support to teach and reinforce anger and conflict management skills. It is specifically designed to address the developmental needs of adolescents ages 10 through 14. The major goals of the program are to help students understand the value of peaceful conflict resolution, to study peaceful role models, and to learn ways to manage anger and resolve conflicts peacefully.

The program comprises five key components: a curriculum for the classroom, a planning guide for safe schools, parent involvement, community involvement, and professional development for implementers. The curriculum has 22 core sessions and a Skills Bank with six basic life-skills sessions. Multidisciplinary extensions link sessions with other related content areas--for example, art, computer technology, drama, health, language arts, math, music, physical education, science, and social studies. The program is structured to change attitudes about how to interact with others, increase students' knowledge about nonviolent techniques, and foster the behaviors that will help young people apply this knowledge. WTP may be implemented as a six-week course taught every day or as a nine-week course taught every other day. Each session lasts 40 to 50 minutes. The Safe School Planning Guide for School Communities and the Working Toward Peace Family Resource Pamphlet are also part of the program.

Program Quality

Reviewers found the goals for this program explicitly described and able to encompass the appropriate changes in behavior that it expected. The program was found to support its goals with a prevention literature rationale that established a framework for the content and processes used. Reviewers noted that the program linked its goals and activities to a framework built primarily on the fundamental principles of social learning theory.

Evidence of Efficacy

The evaluation of the program included random assignment to one of three conditions--Working Toward Peace (WTP), Skills for Adolescence (SFA), or control--in a pre- and post-test design with a multiple post-test in the second year of the evaluation. The evaluation design was replicated in two separate years, and reviewers reported that the second year had the stronger design. Second-year results yielded positive short-term effects in the reduction of misconduct and suspensions for the WTP treatment group. Reviewers concluded that the program provided sufficient evidence of reduction in violent acts and student misconduct, although they raised attrition issues.

The second year of the evaluation study involved 12 to 14 middle schools with 163 students in the WTP group, 151 in the SFA group, and 176 students in the control group. Data related to risk and protective factors were collected using a 25-item instrument measuring knowledge of anger management and teacher reports of student behaviors, such as misconduct and suspensions for fighting. Statistically significant results in favor of the WTP group were found in the second year of the evaluation and included the following outcomes: 1) increase in knowledge about anger management and conflict resolution, 2) decline in violent acts, 3) decrease in misconduct events among students, 4) decrease in aggressive misconduct events, 5) increase in pro-social behavior, 6) reduction in misconduct violations in classrooms taught by high-fidelity teachers, and 7) retention of knowledge of how to deal with anger and resolve disputes.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

To ensure the successful implementation of WTP, each teacher should attend a one-day workshop. The first year's cost for the program is $89.95 per teacher (quantity discounts are available). There is an optional one-day training for up to 50 participants on request. Also available is a five-day train the trainer program. Additional materials are $3.95 per student. Family resource pamphlets cost $1.25 each. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Greg Long
Lions-Quest Skills for Adolescence
Quest International

1984 Coffman Rd.
Newark, OH 43055

Telephone: 740-522-6400
Fax: 740-522-6580

E-mail: gregl@quest.edu

Web site: http://www.quest.edu/


Michigan Model for Comprehensive
School Health Education

Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

The Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education (Michigan Model) brings together an array of national, state, and private resources to promote comprehensive school health. The program addresses K-12 students and is designed for implementation as part of the core school curriculum. The goals of the program are to establish a single focus for school-based youth prevention programs; provide a common language and approach for parent, community, and student health programs; and reinforce prevention messages from a variety of sources.

The Michigan Model, based on the traditional 10 health content areas that the Michigan Department of Education established, has been used for decades as the outline for school health programs across the country. These areas are Safety and First Aid Education, Nutrition Education, Family Health, Consumer Health, Community Health, Growth and Development, Substance Use and Abuse, Personal Health Practices, Emotional and Mental Health, and Disease Prevention and Control. The original content was formed by merging three validated school health programs and taking the best from 50 component programs.

The model contains an average of 40 classroom instructional lessons per year; each lesson lasts 30 to 45 minutes depending on grade level. The educational materials include lessons that incorporate knowledge, attitude, and skills-based instruction. The Michigan Model's comprehensive health approach has a building-block format that introduces, fully develops, and then reinforces key health promotion and prevention messages over a period of years. Parent and family involvement pieces are also included as part of student instruction in key content areas.

The Michigan Model is a hands-on and materials-intensive program. Along with curriculum manuals is a series of curriculum content maps that show how key health concepts like substance abuse, safety, and personal health practices are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Program Quality

This program had clear goals related to substance abuse and violence prevention. Reviewers noted that the comprehensive program identified distinct attitudinal and behavioral changes expected with quantifiable outcomes for each year of the program. Reviewers found the rationale for the program to be explicitly stated. The content and processes were also clearly aligned.

Evidence of Efficacy

The program used a longitudinal pre-post test, comparison group design with a self-administered survey instrument. Random assignments to experimental and control groups of equal sizes were sought but not achieved in every district. Data were analyzed for 1,911 treatment and comparison group students in grades five through eight. Reviewers found that the program used a strong evaluation design, a survey instrument with good reliability for some measures, and appropriate analytic techniques. They noted that the program discussed and accounted for attrition effects. Reviewers agreed that all results favored the program group, although not all findings were statistically significant for all cohorts. All cohorts had at least one significant positive outcome; the sixth- and seventh-grade cohort demonstrated the largest effects. Many of the statistically significant positive outcomes were shown at the second post-test, which was administered more than one year post-baseline.

Evaluation results, based on 442 treatment and comparison students in grades six and seven, demonstrated that students who participated in the program for two years had a frequency of use of all substances (alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana, cocaine, and other drugs)--with the exception of smokeless tobacco--that was statistically significantly smaller in increase than the frequency of use by comparison students. At the end of seventh grade, program students had increased their rates of substance use less and increased their knowledge of alcohol pressures, effects, and skills to resist more, to a statistically significant degree, than did the comparison students.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

The Michigan Model is a skills-based curriculum that requires extensive training of many staff. Teacher training is conducted regionally through a network of 26 Michigan sites and nationally through certified trainers. A paper has been developed to assist schools in understanding the connection between health and learning. Schools may choose from among a variety of training options but must meet a minimum requirement of three days of training in specified content and skills areas.

A five-day training of trainers is offered as needed. Training costs are $250 for K-6 staff and $150 for grades seven to 12. These costs cover all instructional manuals and training support materials. The costs of travel and accommodations, however, are not included. The average cost per curriculum manual is $30 for grades K-6 and $20 for grades 7-12. The average cost per classroom is $450. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Brenda Fink, A.C.S.W., Director
Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education
Division of Family and Community Health
Michigan Department of Community Health

3423 N. Martin Luther King Blvd.
Lansing, MI 48909

Telephone: 517-335-8863
Fax: 517-335-8294

E-mail: finkb@michigan.gov

Web site: http://www.emc.cmich.edu/


Minnesota Smoking Prevention Program

The Minnesota Smoking Prevention Program is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

The Minnesota Smoking Prevention Program (MSPP) is a school-based curriculum designed for students ages 11 to 15. The goals of the program are to prevent students from beginning to use tobacco, to help students stop using tobacco if they have experimented with it, and to help students influence friends and family members not to use tobacco. MSPP is specifically designed to help adolescents in five ways: 1) to learn why people start using tobacco; 2) to discover that nonuse of tobacco is normative behavior; 3) to practice skills for resisting peer pressure to use tobacco; 4) to recognize covert messages in tobacco advertising; and 5) to determine their own personal reasons for not using tobacco. Peer leaders are an essential component of MSPP; they lead many of the activities throughout the six-session curriculum.

MSPP is based on a "social influences" model. This model focuses on those social and psychological factors that have been shown to promote the onset of tobacco use. MSPP activities are designed to address the following social and psychological factors: peer pressure, advertising, and a lack of behavioral skills with which to resist these influences. The rationale behind conducting a smoking prevention program with students in this age group stems from the knowledge that it is best to initiate primary prevention strategies before students start smoking. The rationale behind using peer leaders to lead the group activities is based on the theory that peer influence is the single most important factor in determining when and how students first try cigarettes.

MSPP consists of six developmentally appropriate classroom sessions. Educational strategies include cooperative learning groups, large-group discussions, interviews, role-play, media use, writing reports, and setting goals. Each session is 45 to 50 minutes long, fitting well into a normal class period. In a typical lesson, students may participate in a small peer-led group discussion, analyze mock social situations and identify influences to use tobacco, practice resistance skills, participate in role-plays, create anti-tobacco advertisements, or make personal public commitments to establish their intention not to use. A facilitator's manual contains detailed instructions for each session. Transparencies and handouts are included. Peer leaders undergo a 30-minute training session conducted by the teacher. The group leader guide is written specifically for these students and is geared to make their experience successful.

Program Quality

According to reviewers, the goals of this program were explicit and clear. Additionally, the goals and objectives were rated highly for content appropriateness for the specified age level of participants. The social influences model that underpinned the program's rationale was found to be sound and focused.

Evidence of Efficacy

The evaluation of MSPP used a longitudinal, pre-post intervention vs. reference community design, in which the two communities were matched for size, socioeconomic makeup, and distance from the base of the program. Sixth-graders in both groups completed a baseline survey in spring 1983 and were surveyed each spring until they graduated from high school in 1989. The self-report survey measured the history and intensity of tobacco use. Reviewers reported that the documentation of long-term program effects on smoking was evident in the evaluation data. They found that the measures of smoking were both reliable and valid and that the quasi-experimental design was bolstered by the pre-test equivalence procedures and appropriate statistical analysis employed in the overall evaluation.

Results demonstrated to a statistically significant degree that smoking rates among students in the intervention community were significantly lower following participation in the program. At the end of 10th grade, 13.1 percent of students in the intervention community were current smokers, compared with 22.7 percent of reference students. At the end of 12th grade, weekly smoking was 14.6 percent in the intervention community compared with 24.1 percent in the reference community.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

The cost of an MSPP kit is $148. Kits include a facilitator's manual, a poster, five group leader guides, one set of 120 student handouts, one set of five group leader certificates, and one set of student certificates. A two-day training costs $1,750 for the first day and $1,500 for the second day. Up to 30 participants can attend. National training opportunities are also available. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Ann Standing
Minnesota Smoking Prevention Program
Hazelden Information and Educational Services

15251 Pleasant Valley Rd.
P.O. Box 176
Center City, MN 55012

Telephone: 1-800-328-9000, ext. 4030
Fax: 651-213-4577

E-mail: astanding@hazelden.org

Web site: http://www.hazelden.org/


Open Circle Curriculum

Open Circle Curriculum is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

The Open Circle Curriculum is the classroom component of the Reach Out to Schools: Social Competency Program. It is a grade-differentiated, multiyear, social and emotional learning curriculum targeting elementary school students. This curriculum focuses on communication, self-control, and social problem-solving. The program has three goals: to strengthen participating students' social competency skills in communication, self-control, and interpersonal problem-solving; to promote the creation of growth-fostering relationships among students and between students and the adults in their lives; and to build a sense of community in classrooms and schools by providing a common "language" that fosters communication among students and between students and their teachers. The design and methodology of the Open Circle Curriculum were informed by research on social competency skills development.

In biweekly lessons lasting 15 to 30 minutes, teachers conduct "Open Circles" with their students. These meetings, the setting for curriculum lessons, serve as a forum for providing students with opportunities to develop and practice their social competency skills, for building positive relationships among students and teachers, and for creating a strong sense of community in the classroom. During these meetings, topics such as being a good listener, including one another, speaking up, calming down, and problem-solving are discussed. Then students join in an activity, a role-play, or a game that reinforces the topic discussed. Students are also asked to identify and resolve conflicts. Due to the structure, the lessons provide a place for troubled or excluded children to feel more connected to their classmates and teachers and less alone to face their problems. This process creates a safer, more inclusive classroom and school community.

An Open Circle Curriculum guide is available for each grade level from kindergarten through grade five. The same concepts and skills are included in all six grade levels in a developmentally appropriate way.

Program Quality

According to reviewers, the program goals were closely aligned with the protective factor of developing social competency skills. Reviewers found that the curriculum met the program's goals, as it attended to fostering healthy relationships between peers and students and provided a delivery format with authentic forums to practice and develop social competency skills. Reviewers reported congruence between the level of program effort and the intensity of expected program outcomes. The rationale behind the program was also found by reviewers to be clear and well matched to the ages of participants.

Evidence of Efficacy

The program presented two evaluation studies. The first was a pre-post nonequivalent comparison group design that appropriately used analysis of variance and reported a time-by-treatment interaction for teacher reports of behavior and social skills. The intervention group consisted of 68 fourth-grade students from two school sites, and the comparison group comprised 86 fourth-grade students from two different school sites matched on student and community variables. The second study was a post-test-only design comparing 191 sixth-grade students who participated in the program for two or more years to 86 sixth-grade students who participated in the program for one year or less. Reviewers agreed that the first study was strong and demonstrated statistically significant short-term effects. Although the second study demonstrated long-term results, reviewers did not consider this study methodologically sound because it failed to control for pre-treatment differences.

Reviewers determined that the program was evaluated with an adequate design for demonstrating evidence of efficacy. Although no actual measures of behavior were used, the evaluation assessed a plausible risk/protective factor--social skills--which was specifically defined as cooperation, assertiveness, self-control, or empathy. The short-term study demonstrated statistically significant program effects on teachers' ratings of student social skills and problem behaviors, and reviewers noted that the assessment tool had sufficient reliability to support the findings. The long-term study reported statistically significant program effects on girls' middle school adjustment from three report sources--students, teachers, and parents. Positive program effects for boys included higher levels of social skills and self-control and fewer instances of physical fighting.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

In order to receive the curriculum, teachers must participate in a few days of training over the year: two consecutive days in the summer or early fall, one day in January or February, and one day in March or April. A school's cost per teacher for attending the training and for the curriculum materials is $750. As a trained teacher continues in subsequent years to implement the curriculum with new classes, the cost per student is reduced. In-school consulting and coaching are provided by program staff. Additional training for administrators, staff, and parents is also available. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Pamela Seigle
Open Circle Curriculum
Reach Out to Schools: Social Competency Program
Wellesley College, The Stone Center, Wellesley Centers for Women

106 Central St.
Wellesley, MA 02481-8203

Telephone: 781-283-3778
Fax: 781-283-3717

E-mail: pseigle@wellesley.edu

Web site: http://www.wellesley.edu/OpenCircle/


PeaceBuilders®

ThePeaceBuilders® program is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

PeaceBuilders® is a violence prevention program for elementary and middle schools that aims to reinforce positive behavior throughout the community--at school, at home, in after-school settings, in peer interactions, and in the mass media. The PeaceBuilders model is an explicit attempt to systematically provide a culture that models and reinforces pro-social behavior, reduces sources of adult attention to inappropriate behaviors, and increases peer attention to displays of positive behaviors and competencies. For young children, the program endeavors to increase cooperation, collaboration, and teamwork while reducing acts of aggression and other negative behaviors. The program's goal is for all schools to become peaceful learning environments in which everyone learns, practices, and acquires the skills to ensure positive and respectful behaviors so students can achieve academic, personal, and interpersonal success.

PeaceBuilders uses nine broad behavior-change techniques: 1) a common language for "community norms," 2) stories and live models of positive behavior, 3) environmental cues and feedback to signal desired behavior, 4) role-plays to increase the range of responses, 5) rehearsals of positive solutions after negative events and response costs as "punishment" for negative behavior, 6) group and individual rewards to strengthen positive behavior, 7) threat-reduction techniques to reduce reactivity, 8) self- and peer-monitoring skills for positive behavior, and 9) generalization promotions to increase maintenance of change across time, places, and people. PeaceBuilders is based on key research findings about the brain, including an understanding of the role of hormones and neurotransmitters and their relationship to positive social interactions and readiness to learn.

Resources for the program consist of a student workbook; a teacher Action Guide; a teacher All-in-One Binder; a PeaceBuilders Reproducible Masters Binder; a leadership guide; a staff manual, The Intensive Guide for more-at-risk youths; parent education materials; reward materials; community outreach materials; and assessment and evaluation tools.

Program Quality

According to reviewers, PeaceBuilders had an effective, systematic approach to changing the culture of violence and demonstrated a holistic emphasis on the individual and the environment. Its goals were aligned with this approach and were both realistic and admirable. The five principles of behavior practiced by students--praise people, avoid put-downs, seek wise people as advisers and friends, notice and correct hurts we cause, and right wrongs--reflected the program's resiliency-based rationale and were highly relevant to violence prevention.

Evidence of Efficacy

Reviewers found that the PeaceBuilders' evaluation design was strong, although only a partial preliminary report of the results from a large randomized evaluation study was available. They noted that the evaluation design used well-known instruments with good reliability and validity and data analysis that adequately controlled for threats to internal validity, although no attrition data were provided. With several outcomes, the program reported overall trends in the data rather than statistical testing of differences between control and treatment groups or effect sizes, which made it difficult for reviewers to judge the level of significance for all reported outcomes.

The evaluation used a randomized nonequivalent control group design with repeated measures. Eight schools from two districts with high rates of juvenile arrests and histories of suspensions and expulsions were grouped into four matched pairs. Within the matched pairs, schools were randomly assigned to intervention schools (2,736 students in grades K-5) or wait-list control schools (1,105 students in grades K-5). The study assessed the level of aggressive and delinquent behavior, social competence, the parent-child relationship, school discipline, and peace-building behaviors; it also used outcome assessments such as student self-reports, teacher reports, playground observations, parent self-reports, and school and law enforcement records. Results over a two-year period demonstrated a statistically significant increase in student pro-social behavior in favor of the intervention group, as measured by teacher reports of social competence. Results also showed a decline, although not to a statistically significant degree, in student aggressive behavior in favor of the intervention group, as measured by teacher reports of social competence and student reports of peace-building behavior.

The evaluation also examined data from school nurses' logs collected one year prior to and during the 1994-95 program intervention. Nurses' logs included data on student visits to the school nurse for all reasons, all injuries, and injuries caused by fights. Interviews with nurses found no differences in reporting and record-keeping between the intervention and control schools. Results showed a statistically significant decrease in favor of the intervention schools in the weekly rates of student visits to the school nurse for injuries and other reasons, and reviewers noted that all results were confirmed with analysis of covariance. The major change in the control schools was an increase in the rate of confirmed fighting episodes.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

Before the formal teacher-training workshop, faculty members receive a pre-intervention orientation to the program. The training workshop for kindergarten through grade five is $1,750. The middle school program has a two-day workshop for $2,250. Ongoing technical assistance, study sessions, periodic forums, and occasional one-day institutes on specific topics are available. Train the trainer workshops are also offered for $1,250. Information is provided to administrators to help them evaluate the program. The cost of materials and resources for the program is approximately $8 per student. Program maintenance after the first year is $100 per year, which supports an incentive tool kit that includes leadership guides, staff guides, visual aids, handouts, and a site license. The middle school program is $3,000 per school and consists of an Action Guide plus a leadership guide, graphics binder, and CD-ROM. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Michelle Molina
PeaceBuilders®
PeacePartners, Inc.
P.O. Box 878
San Bruno, CA 94066-0878
Telephone: 1-877-4peacenow (1-877-473-2236)
Fax: 650-244-9962
E-Mail: mmolina@peacebuilders.com
Website: http://www.peacebuilders.com/


The Peacemakers Program: Violence
Prevention for Students in Grades 4-8

The Peacemakers Program: Violence Prevention for Students in Grades 4-8 is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

The Peacemakers Program: Violence Prevention for Students in Grades 4-8 is a school-based violence prevention intervention. Its goal is to reduce aggression and violence among participating youths. Aggressive behavior is reduced across a broad spectrum of severity, ranging from hurtful speech, to physical fighting, to use of weapons. The Peacemakers Program attempts to positively change violence-related attitudes and to train students in conflict-related psychosocial skills, including anger management, unbiased social perception, conflict avoidance, problem-solving, and assertiveness.

Peacemakers addresses two basic dimensions of aggression-related functioning: violence-related attitudes and, more predominant, conflict-related psychosocial skills. Values, self-concept (not self-esteem), and violence-related attitudes are discussed. The bulk of the program consists of training in conflict-related psychosocial skills. The material of the program is organized around a model of violence as the end result of a sequential process, with different skills called for at different points in time.

The curriculum is based on a teacher-delivered series of 17 lessons. Each lesson takes about 45 minutes. Sessions are generally conducted once per week, so the program takes one semester to complete. The order of the sessions is important as they build on each other. Didactic presentation is mixed with discussion and activities. The emphasis is on application and practice of the material. Materials include a teacher's manual, student workbooks, stories, and parent materials. The program contains two optional features: a bibliography of resources and an appendix of classroom management strategies.

Program Quality

The reviewers rated this program high in quality for its clearly stated goals and their alignment to the program rationale. The rationale itself was found to be extremely well defined, with cutting-edge theories of the interrelationship between prevention and remediation in the context of violence prevention. Reviewers also found the content to be superior and logically designed in its presentation.

Evidence of Efficacy

The evaluation of the Peacemakers Program used a pre-post, comparison group design, with 71 percent of the sample receiving the program and 29 percent in the control group. Measurement instruments included a project-developed multiple-choice test based on program content, the Attitudes toward Guns and Violence Questionnaire, and the Aggressive and Violent Behavior Questionnaire. Three violence-related constructs were assessed (knowledge of psychosocial skills, attitudes toward guns and violence, and aggressive behavior) through student self-report measures and behavioral observation scales completed by teachers. The evaluation demonstrated statistically significant results in favor of the treatment students in the areas of increase in student knowledge of conflict-related psychosocial skills; decrease in self-reported and teacher-reported student aggressive behaviors; and decrease in teacher-reported student aggression-related disciplinary incidents, use of school conflict-mediation services, and suspensions for violent behavior.

Reviewers found the evaluation study of the program to be of high quality with some strong elements. They cited the study's short-term outcomes as convincing evidence of the program's potential for changing aggressive behavior. Reviewers referred to the good face validity of the instruments and the fact that the instruments measured the dimensions purported. Interpretation of the results were within the limits of the data and unit of analysis. Although the attrition rate was high, reviewers found that the attrition did not seem to have a major effect on the sample composition in regard to aggressive behavior levels. In addition, data analyses took into account initial group differences and other constraints of working with human subjects that were reflected in the data set.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

Teachers receive six to eight hours of training in the Peacemakers Program. The cost is $150 per hour plus expenses for the trainer. Ongoing consultation is available as needed. Program costs include manuals, workbooks, and training and are estimated to be $11 per student. The cost is $65 for the teacher's manual, $50 for the counselor's manual, and $8 for the student workbook. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Jeremy Shapiro
The Peacemakers Program: Violence
Prevention for Students in Grades 4-8
Applewood Centers, Inc.

2525 East 22nd St.
Cleveland, OH 44115

Telephone: 216-696-5800, ext. 1144
Fax: 216-696-6592

E-mail: jeremyshapiro@yahoo.com


Peers Making Peace

Peers Making Peace is recommended as a promising Safe, Disciplined, and Drug-Free Schools program.

Program Description

Peers Making Peace (PMP) is an innovative peer-mediation program that uses a preventive approach for handling conflicts both in and out of school. The program's goal is to improve the school environment by reducing violence, assaults, and discipline referrals and increasing academic performance. This is accomplished by training teams of students to act as peer mediators on their school campuses.

Research has established that children have risk factors for substance abuse and for becoming victims of or perpetrators of violence. However, children also have resiliencies, which protect them and help them overcome risk factors. This program develops and enhances these resiliency assets.

The program is designed to have an impact on students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade with research-based, age-appropriate, and developmentally sound curricula for each level. Each participating school selects a group of 15 to 24 students who represent the community's racial, ethnic, and gender demographics. Students learn skills such as conflict resolution, nonverbal communication, questioning, and maintaining neutrality. The training activities for students vary in length from 10 to 45 minutes. The maximum training time each day varies by age group: Elementary students receive no more than three hours a day on three different occasions; middle school students no more than four hours on three different occasions; and high school students no more than five hours on three different occasions. Selected students apply the skills they learn by serving as third-party mediators to help those involved in conflict reach mutually satisfactory agreements. Most mediation takes place before or after school, during lunch, or during activity time. Students take responsibility for solving their own problems, which allows teachers to concentrate on teaching. A pretraining needs assessment with materials helps schools prepare to implement programs.

Program Quality

Inviting and encouraging the participation of the whole community while keeping the program peer-led is likely to achieve the program's desired goals. Reviewers found the goals to be succinct, clear, and measurable and noted that materials effectively aligned with the goals. Reviewers also found that this program did an excellent job of documenting its research-based rationale, and the practices all revealed logical theoretical underpinnings. The program was noted for its cultural and ethnic sensitivity, the seemingly bias-free training, and the video's excellent representation of diverse populations, which sent a message of inclusion.

Evidence of Efficacy

The evaluation of the Peers Making Peace program used a pre-post, quasi-experimental design with six experimental and six comparison schools that were regarded as similar based on demographics, socioeconomic levels, population, and incidence of violence and substance use. Results demonstrated that experimental schools experienced a drop of 73 percent in expulsions while comparison schools experienced an increase of 6.2 percent; a drop of 90.2 percent in assaults while comparison schools experienced an increase of 33 percent; and a drop of 57.7 percent in discipline referrals while the comparison schools experienced an increase of 8.4 percent. Results were uniformly positive in the experimental schools.

Reviewers agreed that the evaluation results were useful for assessing program potential. They noted that the treatment schools' reduction in violence was believable and impressive. Reviewers found that the program reported evidence of efficacy based on a methodologically sound evaluation, despite the lack of random assignment and a lack of clarity about sample selection and attrition issues. Reviewers determined that the evaluation used outcome measures that were from reliable sources and that the measures had face validity.

Professional Development Resources and Program Costs

Three different coordinator manuals contain detailed instructions and guidelines to implement the program. Student workbooks for training are provided. Videos for orientations are also provided to both students and adults. Additionally, the developer provides ongoing technical assistance. (The cost per student affected by the program is approximately $1.64.) Costs to maintain the program are minimal. The complete coordinator's manual for each level (elementary, middle, and secondary) costs $100. One hundred student manuals are available for $1 each with a site license. A video orientation is $100. Training costs $550 per day for up to 30 teachers and $250 per day for an additional trainer. (Current costs need to be verified with the program.)

For Further Information

Susan Armoni
Peers Making Peace
Peacemakers Unlimited, Inc.

2095 N. Collins Blvd., Suite 101
Richardson, TX 75080

Telephone: 972-671-9550
Fax: 972-671-9549

E-mail: susan.armoni@pmuinc.com

Web site: http://www.paxunited.org/


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Last Modified: 10/19/2009