Constructively criticizing BRAVO cards

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In hopes of improving the school community and strengthening relationships, the Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) team created a new system that was recently implemented: Be Respectful, Safe, Actively Engaged, Responsible (BRAVO) cards. In this system, teachers and staff recognize students who display ideal behavior with BRAVO cards, used for students to participate in a raffle. Although this system has great potential to fulfill its purpose, there are issues found within it that need to be resolved.

One of the transparent issues with the system is the lack of consistency when it comes to the staff’s process of handing out BRAVO cards. While some teachers frequently give out BRAVO cards, others rarely participate in acknowledging students with them. This results in the conception that earning BRAVO cards can be unfair. A student’s chances of receiving them solely depend on the teachers or staff who actively distribute BRAVO cards. This may discourage students from striving to earn BRAVO cards. Students will not feel the need to make an effort when they are aware that their teacher does not frequently reward students.

With increased teacher participation and a consistent system of handing out BRAVO cards, students would be driven to put in their best efforts in the school environment, not feel discouraged, and understand that they are all capable of receiving one. Improvements are critical in card distribution because they ensure that every student has an equal opportunity to earn BRAVO cards and participate in the raffle. This motivates students to begin initiating positive relationships with others through means of expected behavior. 

BRAVO cards encourage the positive building of relationships between students and staff. They allow students to understand that their efforts do not go unseen, and the incentives prompt students to want to be better members of their school community. Although this is true, another problem regarding the system is the difficulty to recognize the efforts of those who are always on task and follow the behavioral matrix daily. This dilemma poses a problem as to how all students can be acknowledged for their daily efforts in school– not simply those who showcase drastic changes or happened to fulfill a task from the behavioral expectations. 

One solution is requiring all teachers to select a student each week who demonstrates consistent effort in their classroom environment. This would not only recognize those who exhibit consistent hard work throughout the week, but it would also create a tradition where students are driven to work hard in class to earn recognition and a BRAVO card.

Overall, there are issues that prevents the system from reaching its full potential. With improvements taken into consideration and implemented, these changes will pave the way for the system to successfully fulfill its purpose. 

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