Notes of encouragement, teacher mentors and a breakfast club, these are just a few of the ways schools are working to curb discipline and behavior issues.

Compared to last year this time IPS has seen an amazing reduction in needing to take disciplinary actions with students. There could be multiple reasons for the reduction, but it’s safe to say that schools have definitely been working hard to ensure students stay in the classroom.

“The initiatives the schools have taken to address discipline concerns this year have been outstanding,” said Director of Student Services Deb Leser. “It’s exciting to see so many schools take proactive and creative approaches to addressing these issues.

Schools like Stephen Foster School 67 and Robert Lee Frost School 106 have implemented teacher mentor programs in their buildings.

The “Mustang Mentor Program” at Robert Lee Frost pairs a student with a staff mentor in the building. Mentors can range from teachers, administrators, custodians and food service employees.

“The idea is to check with the student on at least a daily basis with words of encouragement, pat on the back, and to check about homework or school work,” says Principal Tina Foster. “The program is not meant to cost anything but time. Students enjoy getting surprises from their mentors.”

Surprises can be as simple as a note. One student recently showed Foster a note from his mentor complimenting him on his academic improvement.

Paul I. Miller School 114 has taken a slightly different approach to working with their students. Staff members greet students coming off the bus each morning and if they notice a student looks a little down they bring the child in for breakfast with the social worker.

“The students leave the group with heads held high,” says Prinipcal Marjorie Lindeman. “They’ve got a smile on their faces and are ready to face the day.”

We’re proud of these schools for taking proactive, innovative approaches to curbing discipline occurrences!