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Montana Behavioral Initiative (MBI)

Positive Behavioral Interventions & Support (PBIS)


We Believe......

All students should be taught the skills necessary for success: academic, social, emotional and behavioral.

cool tools Youth Days High School Forum MBI Team Training

New MBI Cut
This video was produced by the Missoula County Public Schools

What is MBI?

MBI Belief Statements

  • All students should be taught all the skills necessary for success: academic, social, emotional, and behavioral.
  • Schools are places where students can learn and practice positive interpersonal, cross-cultural, and citizenship skills.
  • A caring school climate and positive relationships between students and staff are critical to student success and provide an environment where academics flourish.
  • Schools are places where youth have access to many significant adults to help them feel collectively and individually valued.
  • Schools and communities must work together to meet the diverse needs of students and honor the traditions and contributions of both family and community members.
  • All students are entitled to be treated with dignity and respect.
  • Successful schools gather and use a variety of information to improve teaching and learning.
  • Effective use of a team approach involving all school staff working together provides a consistency which enhances student success.
  • Positive, proactive and preventative efforts of schools and communities can create a school climate free of stereotyping, harassment, hatred and violence—filled with a concern for justice and fairness.

MBI Key Goals

  • Training:
    To increase the awareness and understanding of effective schools practices.
  • Team Process:
    To increase and improve the use of team processes in educational decision-making and in addressing issues concerning our youth.
  • Proactive Support Systems:
    To support the implementation of best practices procedures in Montana's schools, foster beliefs which hold that all children are valued, and that positive and proactive approaches to problems produce the most satisfying results.
  • Evaluation Process:
    To increase awareness regarding the value and use of data-based decision- making in education.
  • Community Process:
    To foster the belief that the education of today's youth is a community responsibility.

MBI is a proactive approach in creating behavioral supports and a social culture that establishes social, emotional, and academic success for all students.

MBI uses the Response to Intervention model which is a 3-tiered system of support and a problem solving process to assist schools in meeting the needs of and effectively education all students.

"Data-based decision-making aligns curricular instruction and behavioral supports to student and staff needs. Schools applying MBI/PBIS begin by establishing clear expectations for behavior that are taught, modeled, and reinforced across all settings and by all staff. This provides a host environment that supports the adoption and sustained use of effective academic and social/emotional instruction. MBI/PBIS has proven its effectiveness and efficiency as an Evidence-Based Practice (Surai and Horner, 2007)

The principals and practices of MBI/PBIS are consistent with federal education mandates such as No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004) (

Four Elements of MBI/PBIS

Outcomes: academic and behavior targets that are endorsed and emphasized by students, families and educators
Practices: curricula, instruction, interventions, and strategies that are evidence-based
Data: information that is used to identify status, need for change, and effects of interventions
Systems: supports that are needed to enable the accurate and durable implementation of the practices of MBI/PBIS


Getting Started

Steps to becoming an MBI School

  1. Complete ApplicationWord Version
  2. Attend Initial Team Training
  3. Select Site Facilitator

We are currently taking applications for additional schools interested in becoming MBI/PBIS sites for the 2013-2014 school year. Each site must identify a team that is representative of the staff at their site (including an administrator).
Site MBI Teams may apply to attend four days of MBI Team Training during the school year. These trainings will be held in the five CSPD regions in order to make them accessible for all those interested. The following dates have been scheduled for the team trainings:

2013-2014 Phase I (new schools) and Phase II (continuing schools)

September 16-17, 2013 Sidney
September 23 -24, 2013 Fairmont
September 30-October 1, 2013 Billings
October 7-8, 2013 Great Falls
October 28-29, 2013 Missoula
January 13-14, 2014 Sidney
January 27-28, 2014   Billings
February 3-4, 2014 Great Falls
February 10-11, 2014 Missoula
February 24-25, 2014 Fairmont
Facilitator(s) Training  
November 8, 2013  Bozeman

If you are interested in becoming a Phase I MBI school, please review and complete the application Word Version. Due September 6, 2013.

Components of MBI

  • Oversees the development of MBI practices and principles
  • Links with state coordinator and the various components of MBI
  • Meets regularly for sharing, communicating, and strategic planning
  • Coordinates efforts to impact statewide policies, guidelines or structures which will promote the mission and goals of the MBI


  • Develop and provide technical assistance, training, and support services
  • Support site teams in their understanding and implementation of MBI goals
  • Serve on the MBI Council
  • Participate in focused training, joint problem-solving and coordinated efforts to promote the mission and goals of MBI


  • Contracted evaluator analyzes statewide implications of MBI
  • Ongoing decision-making and management activities
  • Data-driven decision-making management


  • Participate in professional development training, enhancing facilitator and team leadership skills
  • Help sites develop an understanding of the MBI process
  • Organize an MBI team to identify and address site-based concerns
  • Guide sites through the MBI process
  • Extend knowledge of "best practices" and validated educational strategies
  • Assist in the development of community development
  • Network with educators and community members statewide


  • Workshops and conference presentations
  • Listserv participation
  • Web site information
  • Brochures and other resources
  • Site visitations and presentations


Community and statewide agencies support MBI by:

  • Working with schools to strengthen community and state resources supporting policy and procedures to facilitate effective and efficient services for our youth
  • Coordinating community-based services with schools
  • Encouraging change that enables schools and communities to provide quality services for youth

Youth Day and High School Forum


  • Links the MBI components together
  • Coordinates professional development training
  • Networks with other agencies
  • Develops materials
  • Assists with Summer Institute planning


  • Nationally recognized professional development institute - June 16-20, 2014
  • Join us in celebrating over 15 years of excellence! This year's institute promises to be one of the best!
    • Nationally renowned speakers
    • Hot topics in education
    • Evidence based practices
    • Graduation Matters Montana
    • Montana Common Core Standards
  • More than 4,000 individuals and site teams educated in best practices
  • Networking opportunities for community partners



Who Needs to Be Involved?

Commitment and support begins at the district level and district leaders need to be informed and dedicated to the implementation of MBI. In order to be successful, building administrators and a majority of staff need to support the MBI Process.

For More Information: Contact your regional consultant.


Facilitators Forum

Site Facilitator - Responsibilities

  • Participate in professional development training, enhancing site facilitator and team leadership skills
  • Help site's develop and understanding of the MBI process
  • Organize an MBI team to develop and identify site-based concerns
  • Guide sites through the MBI process
  • Extend knowledge of "best practices" and validate educational strategies
  • Assist in community development
  • Network with educators and community members state-wide


Team Training Materials

Modules 1-10


Annual MBI Action Plan

MBI Session Workbook IV



Cool Tools from Montana Schools

“Cool Tools from Montana Schools” provides links to tools used by exemplar schools and provided to help schools in all stages of the MBI process. Links include:

Expectation Matrixes

Hardin Middle School
On-Track Behavior Expectations Poster

Ray Bjork Pre-School
Includes how staff can provide support to acquire the desired behaviors from the students

Sidney Middle School

09/22/10ROAR Matrix.doc
09/22/10ROAR Home Matrix.doc
09/22/10Home ROAR matrix letter.doc

What does it take to be a Husky?


Lesson Plans


09/30/10Belt-Teen Driver Safety Lesson.doc
09/30/10Belt-Respect lesson 5.doc
09/30/10Belt-Respect lesson 4.doc
09/30/10Belt-Respect lesson 3.doc
09/30/10Belt-Respect lesson 2.doc
09/30/10Belt-Respect lesson 1.doc
09/30/10Belt-All Settings, Learner, how others see me.doc
09/30/10Belt-All Settings, Learner, Self Esteem Questions.doc

Great Falls

09/12/12Blank lesson plan to address respectful behavior.doc


06/15/12Hardin-MBI Respect for Self and Others.doc
06/15/12Hardin Sentence Starters Respect Form.docx


09/30/10Lunch Line.doc
09/30/10Entering Exiting building.doc
09/30/10Bus Ride.doc


Visual learning tools that are used by Montana MBI Schools


Photo Release Form


Success Stories

Conrad High School
Earth/Science Placemat
Health Placemat

Helena Middle School
Be A Champ PowerPoint: Used at Helena Middle School to address Effective Classroom Practices: Procedures and Routines This PowerPoint blends CHAMPS with the HMS Universals. Each classroom has their own variation of these posters.

Central Elementary
Pawsitive Slip Directions: From Central Elementary—given to staff after presentation at faculty meeting to address the systems piece of positive reinforcement

Smith School
Referral Flow Chart: Used to define how staff responds to inappropriate behaviors

Helena School District Wide Universals:
Success Story—Universal Expectations defined at all 16 Helena School District Sites




Service Learning Projects


Youth Days 2013

2013 Youth Days Invitation Letter

Youth Days 2013 by City:

  • Great Falls
    October 6-7, 2013

  • Missoula
    October 13-14, 2013

  • Bozeman
    November 3-4, 2013
  • Sidney
    Nov. 17-18, 2013

  • Billings
    December 1-2, 2013


MBI Social Network

 MBI Social Network Login

What is the MBI Social Network?
The MBI Social Network is an Open Text Social Media (OTSM) community that allows members to share ideas about MBI activities.

What can you do on the MBI Social Network site?
Within the MBI Social Network site, you can:

  • carry on discussions
  • upload (post) files of interest to all MBI schools
  • upload documents to share
  • create and add to wikis
  • check who belongs to the community and tracks recent activity
  • monitor community activity when you aren't connected to OTSM.


Early Childhood

The MBI Early Childhood strand was designed to specifically focus on strengthening the capacity of childcare, preschool, and Head Start programs to improve the social and emotional outcomes for all young children. Best practices in universal, targeted, and individualized prevention and intervention strategies are emphasized.

Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning is a
National center focused on strengthening the capacity of child care and Head Start programs to improve the social and emotional outcomes of young children.

Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning: What Works Briefs
Summaries of Effective Practices for Supporting Children's Social-Emotional Development and Preventing Challenging Behaviors. The Briefs describe practical strategies, provide references to more information about the practice, and include a one-page handout that highlights the major points of the Brief.

Center for Evidence-Based Practice: Young Children with Challenging Behavior
funded by the U.S. Department of Education , Office of Special Education Programs to raise the awareness and implementation of positive, evidence-based practices and to build an enhanced and more accessible database to support those practices.

CO-TEACH Preschool
The mission of CO-TEACH Preschool at the Division of Educational Research and Service, is to offer all children a stimulating, playful first school experience and to provide them with the skills they need to achieve - now, when they transition to kindergarten, and during the years that follow. Moreover, CO-TEACH operates on the belief that all children and families have individual strengths and needs and deserve to be treated with respect and dignity in a safe school environment.

Dr. Carolyn Webster-Stratton’s the Incredible Years
The Incredible Years are research-based, proven effective programs for reducing children's aggression and behavior problems and increasing social competence at home and at school.

How to Promote Children’s Social and Emotional Competence by Dr. Carolyn Webster-Stratton
For teachers of children aged 4-8 years, this book shows how teachers can work with parents in addressing children’s educational and emotional needs. The author presents a variety of classroom management strategies which teachers can choose from to strengthen children’s social and academic competence and develop their emotional literacy.

Devereux Early Childhood Assessment Program (DECA)
Strength-based assessment and planning system for children ages 2-5. Based on resilience theory, this comprehensive system is made up of a 5-step system designed to support early childhood teachers, mental health professionals, and parents in their goal of helping children develop healthy social/emotional skills and reduce challenging behaviors.


School Mental Health Resources

School Mental Health Toolkit