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Special Education Connections LLC

For POAC January 2012


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FBA-Functional Behavioral Assessment

 A FBA is a systematic way of collecting information about an identified problematic behavior in order to discover the function of that behavior. Data is collected and a hypothesis of the function of the behavior is agreed upon by the IEP team.

BIP-Behavior Intervention Plan

 A BIP is a formal written document that is developed following the completion of an FBA. It outlines the function of the identified behavior and lists the strategies or interventions the IEP team will use to reduce/replace that behavior.


 A FBA is a formal document agreed upon by an IEP team. In order to START an FBA, the IEP team has to agree that one is necessary.

 The IEP team that reaches consensus regarding the need for an FBA usually includes a school psychologist. School Psychologists are formally trained to fill out the FCPA/PWCS paperwork.

 The ABA Coach assigned to your child’s class does NOT attend the IEP meeting. HOWEVER, the ABA Coach is a member of the team that conducts the FBA. The ABA Coach can also assist in drafting the FBA.

 One specific behavior-two at the most-is chosen by the IEP team as the focus of the FBA.

 The data for the FBA will take approximately 3-4 weeks to collect, unless the team decides to use observational data already collected.

FBA continued…

 ABC Data-(Antecedent, Behavior, and Consequence Data) is the most informative data collected for an FBA. ABC data can be collected via chart, anecdotal notes or observation.

 Classroom teachers, ABA Coach, Behaviorists, School Psychologists, and Itinerants can all take data for an FBA.  You can request to see all data at the next IEP meeting.  When the data is completed and collected, the IEP team will reconvene to fill out the formal FBA. Or, the school may prepare a draft (like an IEP) to present to you at the next meeting. Either way, you are part of this process.

 At the end of the FBA discussion, the team will decide if the creation of a BIP is appropriate. Not all FBAs result in the creation of a BIP.  If the team refuses to move on to a BIP and you feel your child needs one, and the FBA data can support your request, ask for Prior Written Notice as to why the team is refusing to create a BIP.

The Five Primary Outcomes of the Functional Assessment Process

 1. A clear description of the problem behaviors , including classes or sequences of behaviors that frequently occur together.

 2. Identification of the events, times, and situations that predict problem behaviors will and will not routines.

when the occur across the full range of typical daily  3. Identification of the consequences that maintain the problem behaviors what functions the behaviors appear to serve for the person).

(that is,  4. Development of one or more summary statements or hypotheses that describe specific behaviors, a specific type of situation in which they occur, and the outcomes or reinforcers maintaining them in that situation.

 5. Collection of direct observation data have been developed.

that support the summary statements that


 A BIP is created using the hypothesis derived from the FBA.  The BIP is a formal document and is listed as an accommodation on your IEP.

 Until you formally write the BIP, it may not be “checked” on the accommodations page.

 Until you sign in agreement to the BIP it may not be implemented.

 THE FBA/BIP is on SeaStars in FCPS. It is included in your IEP. The FBA/BIP is not on EDPlan in PWCS and must be attached to your IEP by hand.

BIP Continued…

 The BIP must be measurable.

 BIP data is collected and monitored for consistency by the Case Manager (or designated person in charge of the FBA/BIP).

 The BIP is used across ALL settings, unless specified by the plan. Training on how to implement the BIP must be given to ALL teachers, aides and itinerants who work with your child.  The implementation of the BIP is monitored for consistency and efficacy.

 Substantive changes to the IEP require an IEP meeting.

 When a student has a FBA/BIP, they usually have a behavior goal added to their IEP if one does not already exist.


     Make sure you document your request for an FBA/BIP in writing.

If you are transitioning from one level of school to another (elementary to middle school for example) make sure a rep from the receiving school agrees to the BIP before you transition. If they can’t support the BIP in the new location, it won’t work.

Be honest and realistic about your child’s behavior. Writing a FBA/BIP is the time to look at what your child is really doing-no matter how difficult it is to discuss. ALWAYS REMEMBER-your child’s behavior will most likely go up (get worse) before it comes down (improves or stabilizes). Wait for it. If the BIP is working, it will come. Patience is very important during this time.

Alert the school if behaviors are coming home or increasing at home as a result of the new BIP. The school may have to slow down or adjust the BIP for your family and child’s safety.


 A FBA/BIP doesn’t always have to be in response to aggressive behaviors. If your child doesn’t complete his/her work, if your child consistently disrupts the rest of the class (vocalizes, for example) or if your child likes to elope (even from the classroom and not out of the building) he/she may benefit from a FBA/BIP.

 Aggressive behavior can include self-injury (nail biting until your child bleeds, picking gums, etc) as well as injury to others.  If your child has aggressive behaviors make sure an “interim plan” is put in place and documented on the IEP for his/her safety and that of his/her peers and teachers.


All information provided by Special Education Connections,LLC is for informational purposes only. Reference to treatment, therapy, program, or legal options, or to providers of these services, is not an endorsement by Special Education Connections,LLC. Special Education Connections,LLC assumes no responsibility for use of this information.