Model Program

Positive Action

264 4th Ave S
Twin Falls, ID 83301

Is this your program? Update your listing here.

Contact Information:
Mrs. Keri Metzger
Administrative Assistant

Program Specification:






Strong Evidence of Effectiveness

Age/Grade Level:

Target Settings:

Target Groups:

All Ages

Inner City

Grade Level
School Wide


Other Participation Criteria:

All Ethnicities


Positive Action, a K-12 program, aims to promote character development, academic achievement, and social-emotional skills and to reduce disruptive and problem behavior. The program is based on the philosophy that you feel good about yourself when you think and do positive actions, and there is always a positive way to do everything. Kits are available for each grade K-12 and contain an instructor's manual and enough materials for 30 students. All lessons are scripted and use classroom discussion, role-play, games, songs, and activity sheets or text booklets. The curriculum includes six units; some grades have a review for a seventh unit. Optional components that may or may not be implemented as part of the program are: site-wide climate development; drug education for grade 5 and middle school; conflict resolution; counselor, parent, and family classes; and community/coalition components.

Program Descriptors Include:
Academic Improvement, Attendance/Truancy, Behavior Management/Discipline, Bi-lingual/ESL, Bullying/Violence, Career Education, Community Collaboration, Counseling/Advisories/Coaches, Early Childhood Education, Extended-School/Summer Program, Family/Parental Involvement, Literacy Development, Mentoring/Tutoring, Professional Development, Service Learning, Study Skills, Substance Abuse, Life Skills Training

Strategies for Locating Students:

Starting Date: 1983
Students Served Per Year: 500+
Reenrolled Students with Disabilities: N/A
Last Verified: 2009

Risk Factors:

Protective Factors:

Program addresses the following:

Individual factors

  • Has a learning disability or emotional disturbance
  • High-risk peer group
  • High-risk social behavior
  • Low achievement
  • Retention/overage for grade
  • Poor attendance
  • Low educational expectations
  • Lack of effort
  • Low commitment to school
  • No extracurricular participation
  • Misbehavior
  • Early aggression

Family factors

  • Low socioeconomic status
  • High family mobility
  • Low education level of parents
  • Family disruption
  • Low educational expectations
  • Sibling(s) has dropped out
  • Low contact with school
  • Lack of conversations about school

School factors

  • Race/ethnicity
  • School math achievement
  • Student engagement

Community factors

  • Family composition/socioeconomic status
  • Local labor market/neighborhood stability
  • Youth social attitudes

Program promotes the following:


  • Clear social norms
  • Good relationships with parents, peers, and teachers
  • Involvement with positive peer activities
  • Perception of support from adults and peers


  • Healthy/conventional beliefs and standards
  • Positive/resilient temperament


  • Social competencies
  • Self efficacy


  • Problem-solving skills
  • Flexibility


  • High expectations by community, family, school, and self
  • Optimistic

Program Resources:

Annual Cost:

The annual cost range of the program is less than $25,000 or less than $500 per student.

Funding Sources Include:

Program Staff Includes:

Federal Agencies
State Agencies
Local/City/County Agencies
School Districts
Faith Based Organizations

Social Workers
Graduation Coaches
School Administrators

Materials Used:

Supporting / Partner Organizations:

Instructional Texts/Manuals


Evaluation Information:

Rigorous evaluations of the Positive Action program have consisted of matched-control designs with archival data collected by school districts during the 1990s (Hawaii, Nevada and a large southeastern district) and two recently completed randomized trials (Hawaii and Chicago). The evaluators reported statistically significant improvements in school performance and behavior as follows (all expressed as percentage improvements by the intervention group compared to the control group). School performance: absenteeism reduced by 5-15%, standardized academic achievement scores improved by 13-52%, retention in grade reduced by 73% and drop-out from high-school (after having PA in elementary school) reduced by 37%. Archival indicators of student behavior: disciplinary referrals reduced by 69-80% and suspensions reduced by 33-80%. Student self-reported behavior: violence reduced by 36-85% and substance use (alcohol, tobacco and other drugs combined or separately) reduced by 30-44%. Multiple studies have demonstrated that more exposure to Positive Action produces stronger effects.

How evaluation data was collected:
Outside experimental studies
Data collected and analyzed at school/district level

Additional Evaluation Information: