BIRT - Behavioral Intervention & Recommendation Team


What is BIRT?

The Behavioral Intervention & Recommendation Team (BIRT) is a collaborative interdisciplinary committee of district college officials.

BIRT is intended to meet two distinct objectives. First, the BIRT enhances institutional awareness of potential threats to campus safety. Second, the BIRT can provide students, faculty and staff with opportunities to assess and manage problematic behavior before this behavior becomes a formal violation of the Student Code of Conduct.

BIRT encourages faculty, staff, and students to report behavioral issues that represent disruptions that may affect the learning environment.


Role of the Behavior Intervention and Recommendation Team (BIRT)
  • Concerned for welfare and safety of all of its students, faculty, and staff.
  • Promote an environment where individuals are free to learn, teach, and work unencumbered and uninhibited by threats of intimidation and harm.
  • Multidisciplinary campus threat assessment and behavioral intervention team that guides the campus community in effectively assessing and addressing threatening and/or concerning behaviors.
  • Strives to assist the campus in intervening before behaviors reach a critical level.

Members of the team act with a common purpose to

  • address concerns through review of situations/incidents,
  • information gathering and sharing, and
  • providing recommendations to ensure safety and educational success.

The BIRT does not replace other classroom management or disciplinary processes nor does it address student behaviors that require immediate health, police, or mental health attention.

The success of this process hinges on the College’s commitment to reporting concerns about potential threat of violence or concerning behavior. Send questions, comments, or concerns to .

Responding to Threats of Self-Harm/Suicide
  • When a student makes reference to threats of suicide or attempt at suicide, a judgment should be made by a mental health professional about the seriousness of a possible suicidal thought or behavior.
  • Suicide attempts are first and foremost a medical emergency. If dangerous or suicidal behavior appears imminent or has already occurred, contact Public Safety or dial 911. www.fsw.edu/publicsafety
  • References to or threats of self-harm should be treated seriously. Walk student to the Campus Counselor for a mental health evaluation www.fsw.edu/counseling. Or to the Campus Deans' office if counselor is unavailable.
  • Instances that involve immediate risk/threat to the community should be referred to Public Safety.

Behaviors of Concern

The following behaviors can all be important signs of a student in distress. As a member of the College community, you may notice a student exhibiting any of the following signs and decide that something may be wrong. Don’t wait for tangible "proof" that a problem exists. A simple check-in with the student may also help you develop a better sense of his/her situation and help you better articulate your concern for the student.

Ongoing disruptive behavior in the classroom

  • asking inappropriate or irrelevant questions or inappropriate interaction with other students
  • failure to comply with directives from faculty
  • direct insubordination/aggressive behavior towards others, extremely erratic behavior
  • written or artistic expression of extreme violence, morbidity, despair, self-harm

Physical Indicators

  • deterioration of physical appearance or personal hygiene
  • noticeable signs of physical abuse (cuts, bruises, burns, etc…)
  • disoriented or confused behavior
  • evidence of drug/alcohol abuse (multiple occasions appear intoxicated)

Behavioral Indicators

  • direct statement(s) describing violence toward self or others
  • unexplained hostility toward others
  • expressions of self-loathing, hopelessness, social isolation
  • excessively demanding behavior

Troubling Behaviors
Troubling Behaviors cause us to feel alarmed, upset, or worried for a person’s well-being
  • Changes in academic performance in the classroom
  • Disjointed speech or writings
  • Persistent sadness or unexplained crying
  • Change in patterns of social interaction
  • Changes in physical appearance or personal hygiene
  • Problems concentrating or remembering things or making decisions
Responses to Troubling Behavior
  • You may wish to initiate a private, non-confrontational conversation with the student about your concerns
  • Identify options available to the individual and make referrals to campus resources as appropriate
  • Follow up with the student
  • Based on the student’s response, referral to the BIRT may be appropriate
  • Contact the Campus Dean to discuss your concerns if you aren’t sure how to proceed
Disruptive Behaviors
Disruptive Behaviors interfere with or disrupt the educational process of other students or the normal functions of the College
  • Threats to self or others
  • Demanding, verbally abusive, or intimidating behavior
  • High levels of irritability or inappropriate excitement
  • Loss of contact with reality (seeing or hearing things that are not there, beliefs or actions at odds with reality)
Responses to Disruptive Behavior
  • Verbally ask that the disruptive behavior stop
  • If behavior does not stop, ask the person to leave the area
  • If the student refuses to comply with your directive, consider contacting Public Safety
  • Inform the student of the expected behavior changes, timeline for changes, and the consequences should behavior not change
  • Document all interactions with the student
  • Failure on the student’s part to respond accordingly to your directives may indicate the need for referral of the matter to the BIRT or the Campus Dean since disruptive behavior may violate the Student Code of Conduct
Threatening Behaviors
Threatening Behaviors typically leave us feeling frightened and in fear for our safety or the safety of others.
  • Physical confrontations or attacks
  • Direct threats of harming self or others
  • Allusion to or display of any weapon
  • Transmission of threatening correspondence
Responses to Threatening Behavior
  • Dismiss class, and leave with the group
  • If physical violence has transpired, or is imminent, contact Public Safety or dial 911 after you are safe
  • Do not attempt to initiate contact with a student if you feel it would endanger your safety
  • Forward information to the BIRT as soon as possible


Helpful Links



Contact BIRT

Charlotte

Public Safety - 941-637-5608 x5608
Campus Dean, Student Affairs & Academic Services 941-637-5678 x5678

Collier

Public Safety 239-732-3712 x3712
Campus Dean, Student Affairs & Academic Services239-732-3953 x3953

Hendry/Glades

Public Safety 239-432-6703
Director, Hendry/Glades Center 863-674-6008

Lee

Public Safety 239-489-9203 x1203
Associate Dean/Student Affairs 239-489-9067 x1067