Skip to Content

Letter to HELP Committee on Creating Positive Learning Environments for all Students

July 11, 2012

Dear Senator: 

On behalf of the more than three million members of the National Education Association (NEA), we thank you for calling attention to the need to create positive learning environments for all students by holding a hearing on that issue tomorrow.   

NEA believes that educators should be trained to observe situations or triggers that lead to negative student behavior, as well as prevention and de-escalation techniques. NEA encourages school-wide positive behavioral support programs and behavior intervention plans for students who need them. Such programs should aim to teach students the proper way to behave instead of assuming they know how, and require communication with parents about expectations and acceptable behaviors at school so they can be reinforced at home.  

NEA’s policy brief, “Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports: A Multi-tiered Framework that Works for Every Student,” available at, provides a comprehensive review and analysis of the issues involved.  

Our priority is safe schools—the best learning environment for all students. Preventing problems from occurring is the best way to achieve that goal.   


Kim Anderson
Director, Center for Advocacy 

Mary Kusler
Director, Government Relations