Collaborating with Parents for Early School Success
The Achieving-Behaving-Caring Program
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The Achieving-Behaving-Caring (ABC) Program is an evidence-based approach to addressing the needs of elementary students at risk for emotional and behavioral difficulties and promoting successful home-school collaboration. This practical guide demonstrates how classroom teachers and parents can work together to boost individual children's strengths, reduce problems that interfere with learning, and provide classwide social skills training. The use of trained parent liaisons is a special feature of the program. Detailed, step-by-step instructions for implementing ABC are accompanied by many useful case illustrations and tips. The book includes more than two dozen reproducible handouts and forms, in a convenient large-size format.
This book is in The Guilford Practical Intervention in the Schools Series, edited by Sandra M. Chafouleas.
Table of Contents
I. For Program Administrators
1. Building a Foundation for the ABC Program
2. Recruiting and Training Parent Liaisons
3. Selecting and Implementing a Social Skills Curriculum
4. Selecting Child and Family Participants for ABC's PTAR Teams
5. Evaluating the Effectiveness of the ABC Program
II. For Parent Liaisons
6. Enlisting Parent Participation in ABC
7. Getting Ready for PTAR Meetings
8. The First PTAR Meeting(s): Reaching Mutual Goals
9. The Action Research Cycle: Collecting Data
10. The Action Research Cycle: Reflection, Analyzing Data, and Practical Theory
11. The Action Research Cycle: Brainstorming Ideas, Action Plan, Getting Support and Permission
12. Questions, Challenges, and Transitions
Stephanie H. McConaughy, PhD, is Research Professor of Psychiatry and Psychology at the University of Vermont and a Vermont-licensed practicing psychologist and nationally certified school psychologist. She collaborated on the research design and outcome evaluation of the Achieving-Behaving-Caring (ABC) research project and was Co-Investigator of the ABC outreach project. She is the author of numerous journal articles, chapters, books, and published instruments on assessment of children’s behavioral, emotional, and learning problems.
Pam Kay, MEd, who passed away in December 2006, was Research Associate in the University of Vermont College of Education and Social Services. Her research focused on prevention programs for children at risk for behavioral and emotional problems and collaborative relationships between parents and teachers. She served as Project Director on the original ABC research project and Principal Investigator of the ABC outreach project. With Bob Algozzine, Ms. Kay was coeditor of Preventing Problem Behaviors: A Handbook of Successful Prevention Strategies. She was also an elementary school teacher and an executive in several community agencies.
Julie A. Welkowitz, PhD, is Associate Professor at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) and a licensed clinical psychologist. She currently serves as the Assistant Academic Coordinator of the Graduate Program in Community Mental Health at SNHU. Dr. Welkowitz was previously on the faculty of the University of Vermont, where she was a Co-Investigator on the ABC outreach project. Her research has focused on school- and community-based initiatives to support students with emotional and behavioral disorders.
Kim Hewitt, MEd, joined the ABC research team as a Parent Liaison for children and families who participated in the original ABC research project, and then served as Parent Liaison Consultant/Educator in the ABC outreach project. She was Chairperson of the Advisory Board of the grassroots organization Vermont Parent-to-Parent in the mid-1980s, and has been an active advocate for children and families since that time. Ms. Hewitt received her master’s degree in education from the University of Vermont, and is now pursuing a teaching career emphasizing strength-based and family-centered practices.
Martha D. Fitzgerald, EdD, is Professor Emerita of Education at the University of Vermont. She was Principal Investigator of the original research grant to develop and test the ABC Program model and the grant for ABC outreach efforts. Her research has focused on prevention programs for children at risk for learning, behavioral, and emotional problems; early education services for preschool children with disabilities; and school-based approaches to special education mediated by consulting teachers.
The ABC Program was an opportunity to help my daughter gain lifelong social and academic skills in a constructive, caring way. During our participation, our team would meet regularly to discuss progress and plan next steps. By becoming more familiar with my daughter's teacher, I was able to communicate more easily with her. My daughter and I also both came away with important skills for communicating with each other proactively and speaking openly about our feelings. I would encourage any parent to become involved with this program, as it can really help improve your child's school experience and your family life over the long term.--Diane C. Cummings, parent, Burlington, Vermont
I am very impressed with the clarity of the description of the program, its benefits, the research behind the components, and the steps to implement the program. The book is presented in a user-friendly manner that will enable any school to adopt the ABC Program. It provides excellent checklists and other reproducibles for administrators to use. The focus on social skills and positive perspectives makes ABC especially appealing, and the book gives excellent suggestions on how to successfully incorporate these two elements.--Mary K. Sherrer, EdD, former superintendent of schools, Franklin Northeast Supervisory Union, Vermont
This book is an invaluable resource for supporting prosocial behavior and academic success. The ABC Program enables schools to work with parents using a collaborative, problem-solving process that includes classwide social skills instruction, secondary intervention for selected individuals, and tertiary-level support through the use of a parent liaison. Home-school collaboration is an evidence-based strategy, and this user-friendly manual provides materials and guidelines for implementing it. The book can also be used to train preservice teachers and school staff in important parent-conferencing skills.--Debra Kamps, PhD, Senior Scientist and Director, Center for Early Intervention in Reading and Behavior, Juniper Gardens Children’s Project, University of KansasIf you are interested in the universal and secondary prevention of emotional and behavioral disorders, you will likely find this book both intriguing and practical.--NASP Communiqué, 10/17/2007