Nevada-APBS Network

Click here to register for the Nevada APBS Network

*By registering for the Nevada APBS Network, Quarterly Showcase invitations will be automatically sent to you*

Check out our PBS Fall 2013 Newsletter!



To extend the awareness of PBS in Nevada, with the ultimate purpose being to enhance the quality of life of Nevadans with disabilities and challenging behavior through directed, evidence based instruction, consultation and systematic change. Our goal is to build the capacity of families, schools and community agencies to provide sustainable, meaningful behavior support. NV-APBS network facilities the development of new partnerships with school districts, community agencies and other stakeholders.

The primary purpose for establishing an APBS Network in Nevada is: (1) to give recognition and identity to the many collaborating individuals, professionals and organizations in the state that are currently engaged in activities related to positive behavior support and  (2) to strengthen our efforts to encourage the adoption and implementation of PBS approaches in additional venues that could benefit from it.

The PBS-Nevada project has been supporting the state for the past 14 years and hopes to expand partnerships and resources to further support the community by developing an APBS – affiliated Nevada network.

Quarterly Showcases

The NV-APBS Network is proud to present a quarterly PBS Showcase! This webinar is designed to highlight Positive Behavior Support in the community and to recognize organizations that are successfully implementing PBS. Participants will have the opportunity to share ideas, meet other professionals and be inspired by the work of organizations statewide that implement positive behavior support.

Quarterly Showcases will be:

  • February 28th from 1:30 – 3:00pm
  • May (TBA)
  • August (TBA)
  • November (TBA)

APBS Resources

PBS Practices:  http://www.apbs.org/PBS_Practices.htm


If you would like to share photos of your own, please send them to the webmaster at mteston@unr.edu.


Terror Twins to Terrific Teens

“I have been working with two twin boys who have diagnosed with Autism. Today I talked with thier mother and she is glad to share their story. The mother is willing to do what ever she can to help PBS. She gave me the following information:

The ****’s lived in California when their  twin boys (**** and ****) started to have troubles. Their mother took them to all kinds of doctors and the boys were give diagnoses that range from Autism to Bipolar to Schizophrenia. **** was in second grade when things really got bad. He riped rooms apart, kicked chairs, said he would kill people or blow up the school. Once the school was placed in lock down as a swat team came because of his behavior. Both boys were arrested at school and taken away. **** was placed in self contained room with other older Juvenal delinquents. The state asked to move **** to a special school 4 hours a way. The family refused but instead ****’s mother quite her job to work with her boys full time and the family moved to a school district that was the best district in the region. This time **** became the main aggressor and was given a 1-on-1 add. Both boys were moved into a placement other then their home school with older boys that had police records and to the parents seemed very dangerous.

Again the family decided to move. The boys father gave up a very high paying job and moved to Ely Nevada. The boys were only in Ely for a few months but in that short time **** was kicked out of school and **** was placed in a self contained room. The boys then moved to Wells where **** was again removed from school and **** was placed in a self contained endowment for most of they day. This continued for most of the next year.

The parents were desperate and were able to contact PBS NV and take some classes. They were, over a period of 18 months, able to turn things around. **** and **** are now 14 years old and attend a full day of school with minimal supports. They attend regular classes and two or three LD classes each day. Each boy has only missed 1 day during the first semester for behavior reasons! They have no aides. The school councilor state that when the boys first come to Wells he did not feel safe but now they are different boys! They are progressing and doing great. They would never hurt anyone now. Their mother said the best part is they are finally learning. For 4 years all the school could do was manage the behavior but now they are learning and their academic levels are skyrocketing. Their calls, long meetings with teachers and administrators. It seemsed they told her different things. Now most of the phone calls are positive. She feels she know what to do. The boys are in football and basketball. Mom started a new job in October and things are going great! The boys have a long way to go but for the first time in years they are moving forward. The progress they have made seemed impossible just a year ago.”

~Positive Behavior Support Trainer


Parent Trainings are Highly Recommended

“I am a practicing school psychologist in Washoe County School District providing direct and consultative services to students, school staff members, and parentes and need to express my professional support of PBSNV. Specifically, the direct parenting training provided throughout the community has directly benefited parents to understand the reasons or functions of the behavior displayed by their children. Additionally, PBSNV’s parenting classes are well developed, delivered in a very professional manner, and follow the behavior principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA).

I have personally attended the parent training and without exception, it is the best service provided to parents. The majority of the recommendations I make to school teams and specifically to parents is to ‘attend the parent training provided by PBSNV.org’.”

~Washoe County School District Psychologist


The “Positive Behavior Support Way”

“My name is **** and I’ve been a parent trainer and advocate for over 15 years.  My dream of teaching science faded when my son’s behaviors forced me to stay home for the next 10 years. Behavioral services, both insufficient and inadequate, helped create additional challenges throughout my son’s school years. Ever increasing self-injurious behaviors culminated in his removal from high school and my efforts to develop an individualized positive behavior support plan for the home and community.  Without, these supports, my son would never have developed some of the skills he now has, such as, shopping independently, volunteering, and eating in restaurants.  He still has behavioral challenges that necessitate intervention and our family lives the “positive behavior support way”.  My son is now 27 years old, doesn’t have a job, lives at home and will need support for the remainder of his life.  I sincerely hope that the service providers who will help him in the future will use the positive behavior support approach.  How my son is treated will determine if he succeeds or fails in life!

I came out of retirement to work part-time for the Positive Behavior Support – NV project because I believe its principles can change lives.  I experienced first-hand how challenging behaviors can be reduced or eliminated just by understanding the environment and individual needs.  It can be hard work, but the rewards are worth it!  It is my passion to help families find a better way to address challenging behaviors so that they can avoid my terrible experiences.  Positive behavior supports also helps to understand typically developing children, adults with challenging behaviors and change attitudes toward behavior.  My only wish is that I could have been introduced to positive behavior supports when my child was born!”

~Positive Behavior Support Trainer and Supportive Parent

If you would like to view the original letter, please click here.

Changing Both Professional and Personal Environments

“I am writing you today to provide input about my personal experience with Nevada PBS.  I am a fierce advocate for PBS. The work they do, and services they provide have greatly impacted my personal and professional life. I would like to elaborate more on my experiences with PBS and the supports they have provided me.

I should start by stating that I am a special education teacher. I teach at **** Elementary and 4 years ago we became a pilot school in the district for School Wide Positive Behavioral Supports. At the time my administration was not on board. My principal at the time, **** (who is now one of the most ferocious defenders of PBS) thought that there were needier schools that should be allocating those “behavior” resources. However, after attending a phenomenal presentation in Carson City by **** and many passionate informal conversations/trainings with ****—I was converted to be a PBS pioneer in my school. After many meetings and debates with our site’s administration and potential team members, we decided to go forward with implementation. It was the best decision our school has ever made. During the initial implementation, I was on the team as a lowly timekeeper. We are in our fourth year here at **** of SWPBS and are considered a tier 3 + school. I have evolved into the site team leader and internal coach. Prior to PBS implementation, our school was not making Adequate Yearly Progress. We were just another Title 1 school, with deficient test scores and inconsistent expectations. SWPBS gave our school exactly what it needed, a structure to take a good staff and mature them into an excellent staff. OUR SCHOOL HAS MADE ADEQUATE YEARLY PROGRESS EVERY YEAR THAT WE HAVE BEEN IMPLEMENTING SWPBS! Over the past four years we have had a change in administration, counselors, and teaching staff- but our foundation is so strong that SWPBS continues to go strong with a much higher fidelity that the district targets for full implementation.

Through school wide I learned about some of the other services that PBS Nevada offers. And three years ago I took a class, the “Addressing Challenging Behavior” series to strengthen my professional knowledge. I was highly impressed by the class, and the diverse participants. At the same training were teachers, psychologists, school staff members, parents, and PEP advocates. It was a wonderful unifying experience. And, although I feel that I have a relatively strong background in behavior, I found the class incredibly enlightening. I refer parents and families to it constantly and recall that one father had reported on the last session that this class ‘changed his life.’

As I mentioned, my experience with Nevada PBS was purely professional four years ago. Now I have a two year old son (****), who is diagnosed with Autism. My husband and I have been looking into taking more classes offered by PBS to help support our family in our home. My husband also has night school, so our ability to attend all the trainings we’d like to has been limited. We are personally committed to taking the “getting from point A to point B” class about transitions as soon as our schedules allow with other family members who are a consistent part of our lives. This fall, we took the Potty Pro’s class and found it very useful. We were struggling with how to go about potty training our son who has very limited communication skills. Ashley, Tracy, and Jodie were full of ideas and suggestions that helped us adapt the class content to our personal situation with ****. To go even above and beyond, Ashley Greenwald and Jodie Soracco even spent an entire Friday at our house consulting and providing direct support with our potty agenda. I never thought in a million years that I would have a child with a disability, particularly autism. But the realization that came with the diagnosis was calm and comforted, because I know there is support out there for families who are trying to do what’s best for their children. My son receives support through NEIS, and although all of his therapists are wonderful- the amount of intervention they are able to provide is minimal. I have also applied at the Sierra Regional Center for support, although since our household income exceeds the requirement for services by $670 dollars a year, we are ineligible for services. I must say that my initial experience with the SRC has been very disappointing. However PBS Nevada was available to me before I needed it, is available to me now, and it is my greatest hope that they will always be available to support my son and family. PBS Nevada provides me with the most peace of mind and I know that so long as they are doing what they do so well, my son will be okay, and my family will be okay.

Personally and professionally PBS Nevada has changed my life. I focus my entire career around the principals of school-wide, and like I said before, just knowing that PBS is there to support my family gives me hope and faith that my son will live a happy and productive life. Hands down PBS is the most professional and personally empowering organization that I have had any experience with in my adult life. Thank you for taking the time to hear how much PBS Nevada means to me.”

~Special Education Teacher and Supportive Parent

If you would like to see the original letter, please click here.


PBS Memo of Support

“The purpose of this memo is to provide support for PBS Nevada.  I was first introduced to the PBS program through a district wide in-service training.  The training (no charge to district)  provided by PBS was for teachers of multi-handicapped students.  The concept of providing support interventions to students with severe and disabling behaviors, prior to inappropriate or undesired behaviors occurring is an innovative and progressive approach to managing student behavior.  At the time of the in-service training, I was a middle school principal.  I found out that PBS provided school-wide trainings and began the process of bringing PBS level 1 to my middle school.  Since that time, I have moved on to the district level and have promoted and supported the implementation of PBS into our district at many levels.  Currently we utilize PBS in our Early Childhood program with notable success, Emotional Handicapped teachers in the elementary and middle schools are implementing the functional behavioral assessments and creating behavior management plans for students.   Currently I am having conversations with our superintendent on implementing a school wide PBS pilot program into one of our middle schools and two of  the elementary schools.  Continuous funding of Nevada PBS is essential to this pilot program being implemented.

The staff members of PBS are accessible, knowledgeable and eager to assist our school district when requested.  School districts are facing tremendous budget constraints especially when it comes to staff trainings and support.  PBS has the ability to assist school district with minimal costs and maximum data driven benefits.  This program provides schools with essential tools to address the ever increasing population of students who are arriving at schools poorly prepared for school success.  I strongly encourage you to provide PBS Nevada with highest priority of funding, there are several hundred students who will and are benefitting from this valuable program. “

~School-Based Child Health Services Administrator

To view the original Memo, please click here.


Addressing Challenging Behaviors

The following individuals attended an Addressing Challenging Behavior Training in the state of Nevada and shared their success in response to the training…


Was there a noticeable behavior change with your focused individual?

“My increased patience in dealing with my son. [There is] less confrontational/angry responses from my son.”

How is the quality of life/the change?

“More love in [the] relationship with less uncomfortable interactions.”



Getting From Point A to Point B

The following individuals attended a Getting From Point A to Point B Training in the state of Nevada and shared their success in response to the training…


What are your reactions to the training?

“I find the ability to consult with this group INVALUABLE.”



If you have any comments or successes that you have had with the Positive Behavior Support that you would like to share, please contact the webmaster at mteston@unr.edu.

School-Wide PBS

School-Wide PBS Services

SWPBS provides an operational framework for improving student academic and behavior outcomes by ensuring all students have access to the most effective and accurately implemented instructional and behavioral practices and interventions possible. SWPBS is not a curriculum, intervention, or practice. Rather, it is a decision making framework that guides selection, integration, and implementation of the best evidence-based academic and behavioral practices for improving important academic and behavior outcomes for all students. (Adapted from information at http://pbis.org/school/what_is_swpbs.aspx). Evidence based strategies are organized around a prevention model at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels.


PBS-NV is working to develop School-Wide capacity at the state level and in Nevada school districts by providing leadership, coordination, advanced training, and access to national expertise and other resources. Nearly 50% of the schools in Washoe County School District are in the process of implementing School-Wide PBS. Four schools in Elko County School District and one school in Carson City School District are also implementing SW-PBS. In all, seven school districts are involved in implementing some level of SW-PBS including Lyon, Douglas, Carson City, Storey and White Pine, as well as Elko and Washoe.

Free Teacher/Parent workshops available:

If you are dealing with problem behaviors in your classroom, please see our list of family/individual classes. These classes can be offered free of charge to all participants if requested by any member of the school’s faculty.  Trainings can be customized to meet the specific needs of your school.


For additional information about SWPBS: http://pbis.org


Would you like to be one of the first to know of an upcoming event?

Then join our LISTSERV!

By joining our e-mailing list, you will be immediately notified of any of PBS Nevada’s upcoming workshops. Be able to be the first to register for your spot!

Joining is easy, just follow these 5 simple steps:

  1. Click the link below that says “Click and Register”
  2. Click the “Register” button on the Eventbrite page under “Ticket Information”.
  3. If you have used Eventbrite before, go ahead and sign in to your account. (If you do not have an account, no worries!)
  4. Fill out the needed information on the registration page.
  5. Click “Complete Registration” and you are all set!

Are you ready? Here we go…!

Register for LISTSERV/Mailing List on Eventbrite

Contact Us


Main Phone Line: 775-682-9049

Fax Line: 775-784-4997


Mailing Address:

University of Nevada, Reno – NCED

Positive Behavior Support – NV

1664 North Virginia Street MS 285

Reno, NV 89557

Physical Location:

University of Nevada Reno

College of Education

Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities

4th Floor- 4090

Office Hours: M-F  9am-5pm


Donald Jackson, Ph.D.
Project Director/Principle Investigator
 Ashley Greenwald, M.A., BCBA
Administrative and Clinical Director/Co-Investigator
Jodie Soracco, M. Ed.
Northwestern Training Coordinator/SWPBS Coordinator
Flo Laroy, M.S.
Southern Training Coordinator
Jocelyn Whitworth, M.Ed. 
Northeastern Training Coordinator
Robert Johnson
Northeastern Trainer
Board Certified Behavior Analyst
Janice Lee Fuquay, M.Ed.
TACSEI/Early Childhood Coordinator
Jane Gardner
Administrative Assistant
Melissa Teston
Undergraduate Assistant


Reno “Addressing Challenging Behavior” Workshop

Do you know someone with behaviors that make it difficult to participate in school, family life, work or community activities?

PBS Nevada’s “Addressing Challenging Behavior” Workshop is designed to help you:

  • Define and understand the cause of problem behavior.
  • Identify strategies to decrease problem behavior, improving quality of life.
  • Teach appropriate behaviors which enhance quality of life.
  • Improve the quality of life so that person can be a part of yours.

“Our goal is to give you the skills needed to improve your child’s quality of life, and the life of your family.

Dates: Tuesdays 4/22, 4/29, 5/6, 5/13, and 5/20

*Each session builds on the previous session –  you must plan to attend ALL sessions.

Time: 5:30pm – 8:00pm

Location: TBA

Fees: A one-time $50 fee per team will be collected on-site which includes five workshop sessions and five individual in-home or on-site consultation sessions! A tuition waiver is available based on the poverty guidelines.

Contact: If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Jodie Soracco at (775) 682-9062.

If you are interested in attending please Eventbrite - Reno "Addressing Challenging Behavior".

We are looking forward to seeing you there!


Early Childhood Services

This is an exciting time in Nevada for young children, their families and those who work with young children! In September of this year, Nevada was chosen to be one of two partner states in the next round of the federal TACSEI technical assistance partnership grants. The goal of the State/TACSEI Partnership is to “plan, implement and sustain a professional development system to enhance the knowledge and skills of the early childhood work force in meeting the social emotional needs of young children, particularly those with or at risk for delays or disabilities in inclusive and natural environments. To meet this goal, the specific objective of the state/TACSEI Partnership is to build state capacity to foster professional development of the early care and education workforce that: 1) enhances knowledge and skills 2) supports the implementation and sustainability of evidence-based practices 3) increases the size of the workforce skilled in supporting the social-emotional development of young children (birth–5 years) in inclusive, natural environments” (www.challengingbehavior.org).

PBS-NV, specifically Janice Lee, played a key role in developing the state leadership team and submitting the state’s application. The state had to show both financial and FTE commitment to the project from multiple stakeholders.  Janice Lee and Diane Branson were named as coordinators of the project,

For additional information, check out their websites:

TACSEI www.challengingbehavior.org

CSEFEL (Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning) www.vanderbilt.edu/csefel

For more information about PBS-NV services for Early Childhood support, contact

Janice Lee Fuquay at janicelee@unr.edu

Family Support

PBS-NV provides training, technical support and consultation services to families, agencies, and schools.  Our services build capacity in family members, professionals, and care providers supporting individuals with challenging behavior.  PBS-NV also offers in-service presentations to groups or organizations, available upon request.  All services are individualized to meet the unique needs of those requesting our support.

Trainings Available

Beyond Chicken Nuggets and French Fries: A workshop designed for parents of children ages 2-18 who have difficulty getting their child to eat a variety of nutritional foods.

Functional Communication Training: A workshop for parents and support staff of individuals who have difficulty communicating and who currently or may be likely to engage in challenging behavior as a result.

Potty Training Made Simple: A workshop for parents of children ages 2-10 who have attempted toilet training with little to no success.

Routines and Transitions: A workshop for parents and support staff of individuals who have difficulty transitioning from one activity to another or who have a hard time ending one activity or starting another activity.

Addressing Challenging Behaviors for Parents and Support Staff: This is usually a 5-part workshop designed to help you…

  • Define and understand the cause of problem behavior.
  • Identify strategies to decrease problem behavior, improving quality of life.
  • Teach appropriate behaviors which enhance quality of life.
  • Improve the quality of life so that person can be a part of yours.

Parent-Teach-Reinforce Comprehensive: This is a workshop provided to educators in school districts that have adopted the Prevent, Teach, Reinforce model of Functional Behavior Assessment and Interventions. In this workshop, participants will learn:

  • How to use PTR forms
  • How to use the teaming approach to PTR
  • How to conduct a Functional Behavior Assessment
  • How to do intervention planning using the PTR model
  • How to evaluate and monitor progress of interventions

Breaking the Cycle of Defiance: This is usually a 3-part workshop that is available to educators and families whose children engage in “power struggles” or other defiant behaviors. Participants in this workshop will learn:

  • The 7 stages of defiant behavior
  • Assess defiant behaviors
  • Predict when defiant behaviors will occur
  • Learn strategies to prevent defiant behavior
  • Learn how to most appropriately respond to defiant behavior when it occurs

Request Sheet

Fill out the following information if you would like to request a certain workshop near you.