Assessing Prevalence of Emotional and Behavioral Problems in Suspended Middle School Students

Friday, 11 July 2008: 8:30 AM
Mary Jo C. Stanley, MS, RN, CNS , School of Nursing, University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO

Learning Objective 1: State three emotional or behavior problems that are strongly associated with suspended middle school students.

Learning Objective 2: Provide three intervention strategies that advocate the needs of middle school students who have discipline issues or are suspended.

Schools are seeing an influx of disruptive behaviors related to an increase in emotional and behavioral issues. In the adolescent population, emotional and behavioral problems are manifested in a variety of forms and often result in some form of discipline within the school setting. Although discipline punishes the unwanted behavior, it does nothing to address the reason for the behavior. This study examined the prevalence of emotional and behavioral problems among middle school students who have been suspended. Students who are suspended are the very children at risk for social, emotional, and mental health problems. Results from the study indicate significance in some of the 14 subcategories of the Student Behavior Survey Tool, lending support toward the conclusion that emotional and behavioral problems may be associated with suspensions. Advocating for assessment of emotional and behavioral needs should be considered for students with discipline problems that lead to suspension.