Highlight on CADRE, South Los Angeles Parent Organizing and Empowerment Organization
In 2005, CADRE, with support from Public Counsel and others, successfully organized and led a broad-based campaign to pass a resolution to create Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD) Discipline Foundation: School-Wide Positive Behavior Supports Policy. LAUSD was one of the very first and the largest District in the nation to adopt a research-based school-wide strategy for all of its schools. Since that time, CADRE has worked in partnership with Public Counsel and others to ensure that implementation occurs in all of the District’s 800 some schools.
Interview with Maisie Chin, Executive Director and Founder of CADRE
Knowing what CADRE knows now, what would CADRE have wanted included in the original LAUSD DF/SWPBIS Policy to facilitate faster implementation of that policy?
Knowing what we know now as a result of our monitoring, the original LAUSD Discipline Foundation – School-Wide Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports Policy needed built-in incentives to ensure faster implementation as well as parent, student, and community participation. Quarterly and public reporting of data and progress at regular school board meetings, with opportunity for public comment and recognition of schools with full implementation, would be key to the policy. In addition, implementation needs to mean more than training and checklists of documents being created – the full benefit of SWPBIS must be made clear. We need to tie implementation to specific outcomes, such as reduction in suspensions and office referrals, elimination of racial disproportionality of African American students suspended, reduction in willful defiance suspensions, and increased attendance and graduation rates. And lastly, District resources and funding need to be re-directed to ensure that there is a budget for implementing alternatives to suspension.
Knowing what CADRE knows now, what would CADRE have wanted included in the Policy or Board resolution around the Policy to ensure participation of parents and community in the implementation process?
In addition to the above, the Policy needs to include a mandate for schools to show evidence of school-wide alternative practices to suspension being implemented.
What do you think are the key elements of an implementation monitoring plan to ensure that alternatives to discipline are appropriately and quickly implemented and why does a school district benefit when there is strong role in the process for parents/community/youth?
Schools need to have opportunities to learn new practices and their benefits. As part of implementation, schools should have guidance around culturally responsive behavior support, both prevention and intervention, and be asked to involve parents/youth/community in selecting and developing their school-wide alternatives. Such parent/youth/community participation would facilitate the shared accountability and relationship-building that is so vital for transforming schools.