Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) is a systematic, continuous improvement framework in which data-based problem solving and decision making is practiced across all levels of the educational system for supporting students. The framework of MTSS is a “way of doing business,” which utilizes high quality evidence based instruction, intervention and assessment practices to ensure that every student receives the appropriate level of support to be successful. MTSS helps schools to organize resources through alignment of academic standards and behavioral expectations, implemented with fidelity and sustained over time, in order to accelerate the performance of every student to achieve and/or exceed proficiency.
In a strong MTSS model within an effective professional learning community, the first tier takes place within the classroom. Student achievement/growth data is consistently used to ensure student achievement growth. In the first tier of the process, during data team/collaborative planning meetings, student achievement/growth data is discussed and instructional planning is conducted. With the collaboration of teammates and administrators, a guaranteed curriculum is planned for, formative assessments are developed, goals are written and differentiated action plans are created to ensure achievement/growth for all students.
When data, over a minimum of six weeks time, shows that a student’s needs are not being met by documented Tier 1 differentiated supports within the classroom, the process is escalated to Tier 2. Tier 2 supports revolve around small group, researched curriculum support. Assignment to Tier 2 will happen within the data team process on specified data team dates (see schedule below).
Should it be determined that the student will receive Tier 2 intervention, parent contact must be made prior to the initiation of Tier 2 support. Parent contact should consist of a face to face meeting in which a student’s current data and next steps for success within the classroom are shared. Documentation of what was shared must also be recorded in IC Conference Tab and tracked by MTSS Coordinator. After the initial meeting, parents must be updated at least every three weeks on student progress and copies of updates must be kept.
Tier 2 interventions may happen in two places. Most Tier 2 intervention will happen within a grade level classroom and some Tier 2 intervention may be pull out during Walk to Learn time. The most important thing to remember is that students who are placed in Tier 2 interventions must receive a “double dip.” This means that not only will the student receive small group support within the classroom, but will also be assigned a second small group intervention, either through pull out intervention or Walk to Learn intervention within the classroom.
Jewell’s master schedule supports this model through designated “Walk to Learn” times within grade levels.
Teachers work together as a team to create intervention groups for Walk to Learn guided reading or small group math. These groups should be re-determined after every six week cycle (times for this process are in the data team schedule). These groups will work with a targeted skill trajectory using focused and research based interventions and a 6 week data collection/progress monitoring process. Interventionists will help determine systems for progress monitoring for students at the seventh week whole team meetings.