Reinforcing Positive Student Behavior to Improve School Safety An Evaluation of Affirm


Can police personnel in schools be effectively trained to engage with students in positive ways to encourage and reinforce good behavior even as they continue enforcing discipline codes and criminal laws? To find out, Vera researchers evaluated Affirm, a training program delivered to 644 police personnel assigned to New York City public schools and another 84 school personnel from April 2002 to June 2003. The results, which are documented in this report, show that school safety agents can be effectively trained to play this more complex role, but they also suggest that a better overall safety climate can be achieved only through the coordinated efforts of all professional staff in a school.