Our Lady of Mercy continues to fine tune and grow in our a school-wide system of Positive
Behavior Support (PBS). PBS includes strategies for defining, teaching, and supporting
expected student behaviors to create a positive school environment. Instead of using a
patchwork of individual behavioral management plans, we have created a continuum of support
for all students within our school. This includes support in both classroom and non-classroom
settings (such as hallways, restrooms, playground, etc.).

The purpose of school-wide Positive Behavior Support (PBS) is to establish a climate in which
expected behavior is clear and predictable for all students. Attached is the matrix of expected
behaviors that addresses the three core values of Be Respectful, Be Responsible, and Be Safe and
examples of what that behavior should look like in the various areas.

We believe that all students are capable of following the rules and expected behavior as outlined
in the matrix. If students do not engage in appropriate behavior an office referral form may be

Problem Solving Model
Below is the school wide Problem Solving Model which is used for ongoing problems and by
the Peer Mediators. Mr. Schaufele gives grade specific lessons and models how and when to use
the problem solving steps. Each year the problem solving model will be reviewed and both the
staff and students will be encouraged to use the language of this model when solving larger and
ongoing problems.

Problem Solving Model
Step 1: Stay Calm
Step 2: Agree to Solve the Problem
Step 3: How do I Feel?
Step 4: What is the Problem?
Step 5: Solutions
Step 6: Agree on a Solution

Peer Mediators
Each year the grade seven students are trained as peer mediators by Mr. Schaufele and Mr.
Geary. A peer mediator can be identified by the peer mediator vest he or she is wearing. Two
peer mediators walk around the playground every lunch hour.
Peer Mediation is where students facilitate resolving disputes between two people or small
groups. This process has proven effective in schools changing the way students understand and
resolve conflicts in their lives. Changes include improved self-esteem, listening and critical
thinking skills, and school climate for learning. Peer Mediators do not “make decisions” but rather work towards a resolution for both sides. More serious problems are immediately brought to the attention of an adult supervisor.

Office Referral Form
An Office Referral Form is a systematic form that offers a common understanding for staff,
students and parents of the procedure that follows inappropriate behavior in our school. This
form outlines examples of inappropriate behaviors that would require administrative
involvement. It is intended for those students who fail to follow school or classroom expectations
and/or who demonstrate a pattern of misbehavior such as repeatedly not having his or her
homework completed.

Consequences will be determined by what the action has been and the repetitiveness of poor
actions. This could result in writing an apology to another person, in-school suspension, missing
a fun activity, staying after school, or another consequence appropriate to the behavior at the
discretion of the administrator. Our goal is to teach students to make good choices and
sometimes this happens through making a poor decision and learning from it. The goal is not to
put down students, but to teach them to behave in appropriate ways and to learn from their
mistakes. We are in the process of growing young people, and it takes nurturing, caring, and
good discipline for this to happen. We appreciate your support from home in positive discipline
for your child.

Minds Up Curriculum
Our Lady of Mercy is implementing a school wide curriculum called, MindUp.
MindUp is a comprehensive evidence-based curriculum framed around 15 lessons that foster
social and emotional awareness, enhance psychological well-being, and promote academic

The essence of what the MindUP programs calls for is embodied in the idea all children should
have the opportunity to learn in an environment that encourages students to achieve to their full

The MindUP curriculum promotes and develops mindful attention to oneself and others,
tolerance of differences, and the capacity of each member to grow as a human being and a
learner. It helps students to self-regulate behavior and is dedicated to the belief that the child who
learns to monitor his senses and feelings becomes more aware and better understands how to
respond to the world reflectively instead of reflexively.

Play is the Way
What is Play is the Way?
Play is the Way is a practical methodology for teaching social and emotional learning using
guided play, classroom activities and a specific language set. It is a well researched program that
guides students in the development of positive social behavior. Students will participate in Play
is the Way two to three times a week during PE classes and in the classrooms.

Play is the Way supports our school philosophy:
“As Catholic educators we believe that every child is a unique gift of the Lord. In co-operation
with the parents, we are committed to the teachings of Christ in educating the whole child
physically, emotionally, socially, intellectually and spiritually. We believe in encouraging each
child’s sense of responsibility, self worth and community values to the fullest of his/her

Play is the Way is also supported by the emerging research in neuroscience which demonstrates
that physical activity sparks biological changes that encourage brain cells to bind to one another.
To quote Donald Hebb, psychologist, “When neurons fire together, they wire together” – mental
and physical activity creates new neural structures. The more neuroscientists discover about this
process, the clearer it becomes that exercise provides an unparalleled stimulus, creating an
environment in which the brain is ready, willing, and able to learn.

Play is the Way encourages students through guided questions (see below) to pursue their
personal best rather than trying to beat others. Students can learn to be resilient when
encountering failure and taught to persist against difficulty. Students can be guided to see that
most conflicts happen because of assumptions and allowing our emotions to dictate our actions
instead of our thinking ruling our behavior.

Play is the Way objectives:
 To help students be independent, self-regulating, self-motivated learners in persistent pursuit of
their personal best and able to get along with each other
 To develop students’ social and emotional competencies to live and learn well
 To foster empathetic students, considerate of themselves, each other and the world in which
they live with sound and good reasons for the things they say and do
Play is the Way Questions:

  1. Is that the right thing or wrong thing to do?
  2. Am I making a strong or a weak decision?
  3. Are my feelings in charge of my actions or is my thinking in charge?
  4. Am I running away from the problem or am I dealing with it?
  5. Am I being my own boss or am I inviting someone else to be my boss?
  6. Is my teacher trying to help me or hurt me?

“The heart of the intelligent acquires learning, the ears of the wise search for
Proverbs 18:15