What are Multi-Tiered Systems of Support?

Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), also known as Response to Intervention (RTI), is a tiered instructional model focused on providing high quality instruction to every child.  MTSS is implemented as a three-tiered approach to support student learning.
Tier I typically ensures the success of approximately 85% of the student population.  Students whose data indicate a higher level of need or students who are not responsive to Tier I instruction or intervention may receive Tier II intervention services.  
Tier II services are inclusive of all of the supports at Tier I and add targeted supplemental instruction.  Typically, Tier II will meet the needs of between 10 and 15% of the student population.  Tier II interventions and supports often occur inside of the classroom from skilled interventionists and specialists who can provide additional small group instruction.
Tier III is an intensive, frequent, and consistently monitored level of support outside of the general education setting designed to close the gap between the student and his/her peers.  Each student continues in the tiered intervention until the teaching team has data to indicate that the gap has been closed and that this intensive level of intervention is no longer necessary.  A small percentage of students, approximately 1-5% of the student population may require Tier III interventions and supports. In some circumstances, children do not close the gaps in learning and, in these situations, a team may consider the need for special education eligibility under an MTSS model.

What Role Do Parents Play in MTSS/ RTI in Lake Bluff?

When a child is identified as needing MTSS services the classroom teacher (LBES) or behavior interventionist (LBMS) will call home and parents/guardians will be notified via letter.  There will be open two-way communication between parents/guardians and teachers in regards to the MTSS status of students.  If a child is discussed at the Problem Solving Team (LBES), parents will be informed before and after this meeting occurs.   Our goal as a team is to be culturally sensitive when communicating with parents, and if another language is spoken in the home, the conversations and written correspondence will be translated when possible.

Which Students Receive Additional Supports Through MTSS in Lake Bluff?

District 65 believes in the importance of universal screening to determine which students may be at-risk or may require additional support relative to their peers.  To that end, during the months of September, January, and May, all students in Kindergarten through grade eight are assessed using rigorous assessments designed to inform teachers on current levels of student growth and performance.  The screening data also gives a starting point to design differentiated instruction and set goals. The table below outlines the universal assessments that are given at each grade level.

  Reading Writing Math
Kindergarten - 8th Grade NWEA/MAP Reading District Benchmark On-Demand Assessments NWEA/ MAP Math

Students who fall below the 25th percentile nationally on any one of these assessments will be screened again using the assessments listed below.  These assessments are designed to identify the needs of the student and to help the instructional team gain additional information about student learning.  The second level of screening also helps increase accuracy in identifying which students need support.

  Reading Writing Math
Kindergarten - 8th Grade STAR Reading Additional Writing Benchmarks STAR Math

There are several areas that need to be examined in order to determine if a student requires intervention. The instructional team, made up of classroom teachers, specialists, Learning Behavior Specialists, and EL teachers should consider the following:
  • Data from the universal screeners (identified above)
  • Data from other assessments including, Running Records, Pre/Post assessments, behavioral observations
  • Consider other impacts-EL, Speech and Language, Social-Emotional
  • Teacher Recommendation
In general, students falling at or below the 10th percentile begin receiving intensive services through Tier III.  In most situations, students who score between the 11th and 25th percentile receive services through Tier II.  Students above the 26th percentile receive typical differentiated classroom instruction from our classroom teachers.