NEWS RELEASES 2011-12 :: OCTOBER 25, 2011


Acceptable student behavior is directly tied to success in the classroom. That is why the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction has partnered with a number of agencies to develop a new online course, "Understanding Student Behavior in the Classroom."

This course, which can be accessed at, will assist teachers in developing a deeper understanding of behavioral health issues in the classroom. The objective is higher academic achievement for all students.

The course features tools to help educators:

  • Increase awareness of strategies to positively engage students;
  • Provide teachers with support to better understand student behavior and deal constructively with classroom situations;
  • Help educators in creating a nurturing, engaging environment that ultimately retains students through graduation;
  • Identify existing student support services that support positive behavioral interventions, along with situations that would require assistance of other school and district staff; and,
  • Teach communication skills that foster respect and understanding among students and across student groups.

"I think this information is critical for teachers and administrators and long overdue," said Dr. Richard Martin, who recently retired as a high school principal in Dare County Schools. "Failure to address behavioral health and substance abuse issues has a direct impact on student achievement and graduation rates."

"Understanding Student Behavior in the Classroom" is a partnership among NCDPI, NC Division of Public Health, NC Department of Health and Human Services, NC School Social Work Association, NC School Psychology Association, the Raleigh Police Department, SAYSO, Inc., (Strong Able Youth Speaking Out), NC Families United, and NAMI-NC (National Alliance on Mental Illness).

"There are many factors that influence a teacher's success in meeting the needs of their students, not the least of which is understanding and managing their behavioral health issues," said State Superintendent June Atkinson. "We are very excited to be able to further assist teachers in identifying these needs and helping their students."

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 160 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.