CITY OF KANSAS
KANSAS CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT K - 5 MANAGEMENT SCHOOL
1. Briefly describe the structure of your program.
The Kansas City, Missouri School District Management School is designed to serve students in grades K through 5 who exhibit violent, abusive, and/or chronically disruptive behavior. Placement in the Management School is an alternative to suspension. Students who have committed serious offenses such possession of drugs or alcohol, possession of weapons, causing physical harm to others, vandalism, and arson will be given priority. Students who are chronically disruptive are selected based on the severity and frequency of the behavior.
The District contracts with Niles Home for Children for the operation of the Management School. Niles Home for Children is a not-for-profit agency which specializes in therapeutic interventions for students who exhibit tendencies toward violence or abusive and chronic misbehavior. Referrals to the school are reviewed by a Transition Team consisting of teachers from the Management School and the principal, teacher, and counselor from the sending school. If the team determines the referral is appropriate, a meeting is scheduled with the parent to explain the program and its benefits. If the student has committed a serious offence that threatens the safety of students and staff, placement in the Management School will be mandatory.
Upon placement in the Management School students receive additional assessment to determine skill levels and special needs. Students receive special instruction and/or tutoring in academic areas where they are assessed as deficient. The Transition Team along with the parent and the student develop a student development plan which outlines specific academic and behavioral goals for the student. The teachers review progress toward meeting the goals with the student weekly. The Transition Team, including the parent, reviews the studentís progress at least monthly.
The goal of the program is to assist the student in learning the social and behavioral skills necessary to be successfully transitioned back into the sending school. During the time the student is in the Management School the sending school principal and teacher participate in the monthly review of the studentís progress as members of the Transition Team. They periodically visit the Management School to provide support and encouragement to the student, praise the student on goals achieved, and support the goal of returning to the sending school. When the student meets the goals of the student development plan, the Transition Team along with the parent and the student will develop a plan to transition the student back into the sending school. The plan may call for a gradual transition. Once the student returns to the sending school, a member of the Management School staff will visit the school at least once a week for four weeks to review progress being made and to provide support to the student and the teacher.
After the student has been back at the sending school for one month, the Transition Team determines if weekly visits will be continued or if the frequency of visits will be reduced. The Transition Team will review the studentís progress at least once a month through the end of the school year. If after returning to the sending school the student demonstrates difficulty in adjusting or exhibits some of the previous behavioral patterns, the Transition Team will arrange for the counselor to visit with the student and for support for the sending teacher.
2. When was the program created and why?
During the 1996 - 1997 school year the District enrollment for grades K through 5 was 18,765. A total of 1,494 of the K - 5 students received suspensions totaling 4,252 days out of school. Fifty-one of these students were suspended because of serious offenses including carrying weapons, attempting to harm a school employee, assault, and causing serious physical harm to students or staff. As a result of suspension, students were left without a structured course of study to continue their educational programs. By placing students in the Management School efforts would focus on modifying violent and disruptive behavior while allowing students to continue their academic studies. Following successful completion of the intervention services, students would be returned to the sending classroom. The program began in the fall of 1997.
3. How do you measure the programís effectiveness?
The effectiveness is measured by improvement in the behavior of the students and their successful transition back to the sending classroom.
4. How is the program financed?
The program is financed through a Safe Schools Grant received from the state of Missouri and funds from the city of Kansas City, Missouri; the Kansas City, Missouri School District; and Niles Home for Children.
5. How is the community involved in the program, if at all? How has the community responded to the program?
Because the program has only been in existence for a year there is not a lot of awareness in the community. It has been very well received by teachers and principals in the District.
6. Contact person:
The United States Conference of Mayors
J. Thomas Cochran, Executive Director
Copyright © 1999, US Conference of Mayors, All rights reserved.