Feature Stories

Portland Schools Celebrate ENVoY Certified School Status!

Sitton-ElementaryBalloons, cake, recognition certificates, school plaques, appreciation awards, cheers, laughs, and lots of smiles from principals and staff!  That’s how two Portland, Oregon school staffs and principals celebrated their recently earned status as ENVoY Certified Schools!  George Middle School and Sitton Elementary School are now seeing the amazing results and benefits of a year of dedication to becoming a school where non-verbal management of students has replaced verbal conflicts and time-consuming repetitive non-productive behaviors.

In 2008, both George and Sitton were facing low-performing test scores, high student absenteeism rates, above average numbers of office discipline referral issues, and frustrated teaching challenges.  “These kids were practically running this place,” noted Principal Beth Madison.  But that’s not the case anymore.

“Both schools have fully embraced the process of (ENVoY) going visual rather than verbal to manage students, and now you can see, hear, and feel the difference in classrooms, hallways, and common areas of the campuses,” explains ENVoY trainer and coach Adrian Walker.  “It’s been truly amazing to see the cultural shift these teachers have created for themselves and their students.  Office referrals are down.  Teachers are less stressed.  Students are better behaved and more easily managed without teachers ever having to raise their voices, and there are improved student teacher relationships these days!”

ENVoY building coach and teacher, Morgan Evans, agrees.  “Deciding for George to become ENVoY certified really bumped up our awareness of how to manage more visually and took us to a higher level as a staff.  I’m glad we did it, because it is best for students.”

To become a certified school, ENVoY founder Michael Grinder requires at least 80% of all staff be able to correctly demonstrate all 7 of the ENVoY baseline skills called the 7 Gems.  An additional 25 skills make up the “refinements” of ENVoY and teachers find themselves using many of those strategies as well.  George and Sitton are the first two trained schools in the area that have been coached to certification by A & J Educational and Professional Consulting. “Next year we hope to celebrate more certified ENVoY schools,” says Jan Howell-Spiesman of A & J.  But for now… Congratulations to George and Sitton!  Best wishes for a wonderful upcoming school year!