MTSS Handouts

Strengthening MTSS through Families and Community
What is MTSS?
MTSS stands for Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and refers to the framework in which
resources and services are organized on a continuum of intensity based on students’ academic
and behavioral needs.
What should families expect from the school implementing MTSS?
Frequent updates on student progress (at least 3 times per year)
Academic and behavioral concerns identified early, at first signs of difficulty
Help for their child that increases or decreases depending on needs
Information and involvement in planning and providing interventions to help their child
Information about how their child is responding to the interventions being provided
Let them know what to expect,
then make sure that the expectations match their experience!
Help your families understand the purpose of tiers of instruction
To provide high quality instruction and interventions that fit the needs of all students
To ensure that the conditions for learning are optimal for every student
To incorporate intervention (“help”) as a natural, ongoing part of education that doesn’t wait
until the student is struggling
How do you describe tiers to families?
Tier 1
• High quality
instruction and
behavioral supports
through general
education for all
Tier 2
Tier 3
• Focused intervention
designed for groups in
addition to the general
education when
needed for success for
some students
• Intensive intervention
designed for
individuals in addition
to the general
education when
needed for success
Strengthening MTSS through Families and Community
How do we describe the problem solving process to families?
Step 1
What is the
What does the student do?
What should the student be able to do?
Step 2
Why is it
Why is the student not reaching the goal?
Step 3
What are
we going to
do about it?
Develop and implement a plan with evidence-based
strategies to address problems in step 2 and help
students attain goals.
Step 4
Is it
Is the student making progress toward the goal in
response to the plan?
What questions should guide families’
communications with the school?
• Is my child successful? How do I know?
If not, why and what can we do
• If needed, how will additional help be
provided? By whom? How often? For
how long?
• How can I participate in problem-solving
for my child?
• What can I do to help my child at home?
• How will I know if our interventions are
If families believe their child is
struggling, what is their course of
• Talk with their child’s teacher.
• Ask for regular progress reports in the
areas of difficulty.
• Celebrate when progress is made; ask
questions when there is little or no
• Make a list of specific questions to ask
about their child’s progress.
• Ask for support to understand and
participate in decisions about your child.
Does MTSS have anything to do with Special Education?
 MTSS is the framework that supports ALL students from kindergarten to graduation, including
students with disabilities.
 Special education services are part of the MTSS continuum of services. They are intensive,
individualized supports included in Tier 3.
 Not all students receiving supports at Tier 3 are special education eligible. Some students will
have their needs met with individualized supports at Tier 3 and not require special education
services. Other students will not benefit sufficiently from general education supports at Tier 3
and be referred to consider special education eligibility.
 Special education is a resource, not a place, intervention or tier. MTSS is a framework, not a
Strengthening MTSS through Families and Community