Within a multi-tiered system of supports (MTSS), intensive intervention, also known as Tier 3, is designed to support students with the most severe and persistent learning and/or behavior difficulties. This document highlights some common misconceptions about intensive academic and behavior interventions that experts from the Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports and NCII have observed in supporting the implementation of intensive intervention within the context of MTSS.
Implementation Guidance and Considerations
There are a variety of terms used interchangeably to define special education: specially-designed instruction, Tier 3 supports, and intensive intervention, but, do they mean the same thing? In this presentation, delivered at the 2017 OSEP Leadership Conference, state leaders of special education, David Sienko from the Rhode Island Department of Education and Glenna Gallo, from the Washington State Board of Education – alongside personnel from the National Center on Intensive Intervention – shared perspectives on how special education is defined to espouse commonalities across terminology and services to support students with disabilities. Presentation
NCII presented a strand at Center for Exceptional Children (CEC) 2016 Convention and Expo. The strand, Intensive Intervention 2.0: Integrating for Intensity, Learning from Implementation, and Refining our Understanding of Evidence, discuss lessons learned from NCII’s support for implementation of intensive intervention within a multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) framework. The strand addresses (a) the integration of academic and behavioral intervention to support students with diverse learning needs; (b) successes and challenges observed by school and district leaders attempting to implement intensive intervention in high-needs schools, and; (c) considerations for understanding standards of evidence and identifying appropriate interventions and strategies across tiers of an MTSS system.
Providing more explicit instruction, captured within the comprehensiveness domain of the Taxonomy of Intervention Intensity, is critical within intensive intervention. The Recognizing Effective Special Education Teachers (RESET) project, funded by U.S. Department of Education Institute for Education Sciences (IES) and led by Evelyn Johnson at Boise State University, developed a series of rubrics based on evidence-based practices for students with high incidence disabilities. One set of rubrics focuses on explicit instruction. Based on the main ideas of Explicit Instruction, the Explicit Instruction Rubric was designed for use by supervisors and administrators to reliably evaluate explicit instructional practice, to provide specific, accurate, and actionable feedback to special education teachers about the quality of their explicit instruction, and ultimately, improve the outcomes for students with disabilities.
An effective and efficient data system is essential for successful implementation of a multi-tiered system of support (MTSS). However, prior to selecting an appropriate system, schools and districts must identify what its staff and community need and what resources the district or school has to support an MTSS data system. This two-step tool can help teams to consider both what their needs are and to evaluate available tools against those needs. Step 1 can help your team systematically identify and document your MTSS data system needs and current context and step 2 focuses on selecting and evaluating a data system for conducting screening and progress monitoring within a tiered system of support based on the identified needs and context from step 1
The MTSS Fidelity of Implementation Rubric and Summary Sheet are for use by individuals responsible for monitoring the school-level fidelity of MTSS implementation.