Schools in the US have increasingly been paying lesser attention to programs with regard to the students' stress behavior, commitment to the school, and social development. The Social Development Research Group of the University of Washington conducted a study of almost 600 students which revealed that tackling anti-social tendencies like violence, delinquency, and substance use among students also contributes towards better academic performance.
The progress reported by two groups of students is being followed by the Raising Healthy Children Project, wherein the intervention method has been adopted with one group only. The study has revealed that higher test scores and grades can be achieved in the seventh grade as a result of greater attachment to the school, and better emotional, social and decision making skills. This has a direct bearing upon the grades awarded by the Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) to 10th graders.
Lower grades were on the other hand found to be directly related to aggressive and disruptive behavior, attention problems, and the negative example set by peers, in addition to the early usage of cigarettes and alcohol. Better academic performance by students can be ensured by taking corrective action when negative behavior is detected. Bullying behavior among students is also being discouraged in middle and elementary schools.
The relevant data for the study was collected from sources like parents, students, and the teaching staff. The intervention program was inclusive of workshops for both parents and teachers, and study clubs and summer camps for students. Particular skills are imparted to students, which help them to cope with their problems more effectively, which also contributes towards better academic performance.