Traditional School Discipline Doesn’t Work

If teaching is taking a backseat to managing the classroom, and time-outs, behavior charts, detentions, and suspensions aren’t helping your students meet expectations, we know why. Research shows that kids with challenging behavior lack the skill, not the will, to behave.

Traditional school discipline is broken. It often doesn’t improve behavior or relationships between students and their teachers. In addition, it has been shown to be disproportionately applied to students of color. The Collaborative Problem Solving® (CPS) approach is an equitable and effective form of discipline that reduces concerning behavior and teacher stress while building skills and relationships between educators and students. CPS can be integrated into Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and provides actionable strategies for trauma-sensitive education. It provides a proven roadmap for differentiating discipline even with students with the most challenging behavior.

Positive Cycle of Relational Discipline

Relational Discipline at School Works

Exposure to chronic stress interferes with healthy development, leading to lags in skills, which are the root cause of challenging behavior. When we respond to unwanted behavior with punitive discipline, it simply adds stress to students and educators, further delaying skills, worsening behavior, and damaging relationships.

However, research has shown that responding to challenging behavior with relational forms of discipline actually decreases stress and helps build skills while decreasing concerning behavior. What exactly is relational discipline? Rather than leveraging power and control to respond to unwanted behavior, relational forms of discipline rely on empathy and understanding to form a helping relationship to work together with students to solve problems. Collaborative Problem Solving provides a roadmap for practicing effective relational discipline that any educator can follow.

Transform Discipline at Your School

Learn how to identify the lagging thinking skills that lead to challenging behavior. Apply a behavior intervention process that is proven to reduce concerning behavior while building skills, relationships, and internal drive. Join us to learn actionable strategies where educators partner with students to develop solutions together.

Bring CPS to Your School


The Results

Our research has shown that the Collaborative Problem Solving approach helps kids and adults build crucial social-emotional skills and leads to dramatic decreases in behavior problems across various settings. Results in schools include remarkable reductions in time spent out of class, detentions, suspensions, injuries, teacher stress, and alternative placements as well as increases in emotional safety, attendance, academic growth, and family participation.

73% reduction oppositional behavior
change in out of class

What Our Clients Say

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Mathew Gross, Teacher Park Slope Collegiate, Brooklyn, NY
“Our school’s suspension and removal rates are down significantly. Relationships between our school staff and our most struggling students continue to improve, and the culture and tone of our school is shifting. Think:Kids has delivered what they promised.”
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