REFERENCE: Hovell, M., Mc Laughlin, T. F. (1974). Parents as agents of change in the remediation of classroom behavior problems. Journal of Mental Health Technology, 2, 33-39.

Behavior modification has provided educators with empirically sound procedures for improving student performance. Most classroom studies have concentrated on the teacher as the primary change agent, the one best able to shape behavior. However, these studies, though successful in improving pupil performance, may leave room for further progress. Increasing the reading achievement from the third to the fifth-grade level for a group of eight-grade students may represent reasonable improvement. Since further gains should be obtained before a program may be considered a success, additional research and follow-up data may be required. The use of parents to create behavior change may be a possible solution for such a behavior problem.

It has been shown that parents working with therapists can improve their children's behavior in the home setting. Procedures employed in the home ranged from elaborate token systems to direct intervention by the therapist. Results from these studies and similar programs indicate that parents are capable of altering behavior to resolve established problems. However, it is not yet clear that parents can be effective in the instruction and remediation of classroom behavior problems in home settings.

The purpose of this paper is to: (a) present research where parents have been involved in the remediation of school behavior problems in the home environment, (b) examine the use of parents in the school environment to affect behavior change, (c) present a possible model which could be used by parents and school personnel to solve classroom behavior problems and (d) provide a measurement system to evaluate the success of such a possible program.


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