School-wide positive behaviour support

School-wide positive behaviour support (SWPBS) helps schools improve social, emotional, behavioural and academic outcomes for students from Foundation to Year 12.

  • Tier:
    • Tier 1: Positive Mental Health Promotion
    • Tier 2: Early intervention and cohort specific support
  • Type of intervention: Whole school approach to positive mental health
  • Strength of evidence: Registered professional
  • Geographic location: State-wide

Program description

School-wide positive behaviour support (SWPBS) is a framework for school communities from Foundation to Year 12 that helps schools in improving social, emotional, behavioural and academic outcomes for their students.

SWPBS provides evidence-based, positive, and proactive practices that support and respond to students’ social, emotional, and behavioural needs.

SWPBS uses a tiered intervention framework along with robust data-based decision making to provide primary prevention for all staff and students, secondary prevention for students with at-risk behaviour and tertiary prevention for students with high-risk behaviour.

Intended outcomes

  • Improve social, emotional, behavioural and academic outcomes for students
  • Support schools in implementing evidence-based practices and interventions matched to student need to improve learning outcomes for children and young people

Program details

Target audience
  • Primary school students
  • Secondary school students
  • Capacity building for primary school staff
  • Capacity building for secondary school staff
Program providerDepartment of Education VIC
Delivery mode
  • Face-to-face
  • Online
  • Combination of face to face and online

Implementation considerations

Factors to consider:

  • SWPBS is a long-term commitment, 3-5 years to fully implement.
  • To achieve lasting outcomes, it needs to be one of the top whole school priorities.
  • It is important to consider how SWPBS will contribute to school improvement goals.

Questions to consider:

  • How will the school make SWPBS implementation a priority goal?
  • Can the school commit to a 3–5 year journey?
  • How will time allocation of the SWPBS implementation team be supported?

Time and resources will need to be prioritised for SWPBS team staff training, meetings and whole staff professional learning to take place.


  • Item cost: Free
  • Detailed cost: No direct cost for Professional learning and coaching. Resourcing of SWPBS implementation team staff and time is required.