What is De-Escalation Training?
De-escalation training is the process of learning how to de-escalate a conflict or stressful situation. When it comes to education, training programs will usually focus on acknowledging student behavior, embracing communication methods, and classroom management.
Here’s a quick rundown of each tenet of this training and how it works in the field:
One essential element of de-escalating student behavior is to recognize the cause of a student’s feelings. If a student feels neglected or ignored, they may choose to act out aggressively. Sometimes, a student’s behavior is due to their family life, so it’s imperative for educators to acknowledge how they feel and why.
The most effective way to de-escalate a conflict is to communicate with those involved. In some cases, the problem may be between the educator and the student. In those instances, it’s crucial for teachers to recognize their own behaviors and learn how to communicate more effectively with students.
In cases where students are arguing with each other, communication is still one of the best de-escalation strategies. Educators must be able to talk with each student and help them understand each other. Otherwise, the conflict could escalate and worsen.
It’s also imperative to understand that communication is more than speaking. When de-escalating student behavior, an educator must also practice active listening. If a student feels ignored, they’re less likely to agree to an amicable solution.
Often, when teachers struggle to manage their students, there’s a bit of a power struggle between educators and kids exhibiting acting-out behavior. In these instances, both parties are competing for attention, so it’s imperative for educators to know how to calm their classroom down. Otherwise, disruptive student behavior could derail their curriculum and create chaos.
Why is De-Escalation Training for Educators Beneficial?
With so many stressors at school, de-escalation training is important for several reasons. There’s a tendency for educators to pass troublesome students to SROs or the principal, but effective training can help mitigate most conflicts.
Here are some of the primary advantages of investing in this kind of training for educators.
Better Learning Environment
If the classroom is stressful for the teacher, it must also be the same for the students. So, the calmer and happier everyone is, the easier it is for them to learn. Practicing effective de-escalation strategies helps to learn in two ways:
- First, student behavior is less disruptive, so the teacher can move forward with lesson plans and actual teaching without distractions or setbacks.
- Second, when students are allowed to focus on their studies, they’re able to retain more information. According to research, stress inhibits the brain’s ability to form short-term memories. So, if students are stressed about conflicts in the classroom, they won’t be able to learn very well.
Happier and Healthier Students
When educators learn how to de-escalate conflicts effectively, they can work better with their students on various problems, both academic and personal. Because communication is such an integral part of de-escalating student behavior, kids will learn how to express themselves more positively.
Overall, practicing these strategies can impact more than just the teacher – it can bleed into the curriculum and help students learn. When they see positive and constructive solutions in action, they’re less likely to act out and disrupt the class.
Additionally, teachers can implement calming strategies for the students so they stay calm and focus more on their work.
Stronger School Community
The classroom is an extension of one’s personal space, considering that students spend a lot of time in it. When conflict arises regularly, that can lead to increased anxiety and isolation among the children.
When educators are able to spot warning signs and address conflicts before they arise, they can create a much stronger sense of community. This also allows students to learn how to communicate more effectively and collaborate on projects.
Even former problematic students can participate, especially if the educator doesn’t utilize exclusionary practices. While it’s tempting to just remove a disruptive student, that can impact the rest of the class. Instead, it’s better to talk to them and make them a productive part of the classroom.
How to Choose a De-Escalation Training Program
While the benefits are clear, finding the best de-escalation training program may be challenging. Since you want to ensure that school staff are as well trained as possible, make sure to pay attention to these factors. They will help you compare programs to find the right one for your needs.
Tailored De-Escalation Strategies
Although de-escalation tactics can be applied to any field, you don’t want a program that takes a “one-size-fits-all” approach. Educators have a much different daily routine than those in other professions, so it’s imperative for trainers to understand that.
Also, not every school has the same kinds of students or faculty. Some schools may have more mild conflicts, while others could experience physical altercations regularly. A training program should be able to focus on the specific needs of your school to ensure better long-term success.
Experience Within the Education Field
Customizing a de-escalation strategy is one thing, but knowing how to implement it is another. Ideally, a trainer will have some experience in the education field so they know what teachers and faculty go through.
That said, even if a trainer doesn’t have firsthand experience, it helps if they’ve trained other school faculty in the past. This way, they know a bit more about the field and what’s required of educators. For example, some strategies may not be feasible in a classroom setting, especially when the conflict is between a teacher and a student.
If nothing else, the trainer should be open-minded and actively listening to feedback from trainees. Since educators are the ones on the front line, they can provide better insight into what strategies may work the best.
Long-Term Success Plan
Conflict de-escalation is not a one-time experience. While it would be nice for each conflict to resolve permanently, the reality is much different. So, a high-quality de-escalation training program should offer long-term solutions for educators and staff.
If possible, it’s best to schedule annual or biannual training so teachers can brush up on their skills and learn how to apply different tactics in different situations. Follow-up meetings and trainings can yield significant improvements over time, both with the educator and the students.
Choose Defuse For Your De-Escalation Training Needs
Defuse is dedicated to providing the best de-escalation training for educators and other school staff members. From learning all about body language to practicing active communication, our program will yield substantial benefits. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help your team.