What is RTP?

Imagine a student discipline program that actually teaches students to take responsibility for their own behavior without in any way trying to control them or do something to them to make them change the way they behave. And imagine a discipline program where there are no rewards, no special treats, and no punishment. Yes, no punishment. No predetermined time for suspension or detention. And where students decide the amount of time they are away from class or, in the case of serious acts of misconduct, away from school. And, surprisingly, with few exceptions, the students believe the program to be fair.

And yet, the same program provides remarkable results in improved discipline throughout the school, with reductions in suspensions and detentions, fighting and bullying, and where the teachers have more time to teach with less classroom disruptions. The success of this process has been demonstrated in schools from the west coast of Alaska to the east coast of the U. S., and in schools as far away as Australia and Singapore.

Here is a process by which students are taught to monitor their own behavior by taking responsibility for what they do. Rather than telling students what to do where you do the thinking, why not ask them what they are doing in relation to the rules or standards of where they are? That means teaching them how to think on their own and create their own effective plans rather than someone else doing the thinking for them. Everyone in school, that is, teachers, administrators, and students, should be held accountable for respecting the rights of others. Students have to be taught this skill. Punishment and rewards do not teach people to think, they are only a method of control. We are not designed to be controlled.

This process was developed by Edward E. Ford and is called The Responsible Thinking Process (RTP)®. It is based on Perceptual Control Theory (PCT), (See section titled About Perceptual Control Theory).