Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS), also known as Response to Intervention (RtI) enables teachers to diagnose a student’s entry level in specific content, prescribe an intervention that will advance the student’s progress, and assess the degree to which the intervention worked. All students in a grade level are grouped according to their readiness (achievement level) and ability for learning.
MTSS is a multi-level framework for student growth in the classroom. The framework provides a process for teachers to ensure personalized learning for all students to reach their potential. The foundation of MTSS includes: data collection, instruction, and interventions. MTSS is about clearly identifying students’ needs, designing a tiered system of support that rests on strong core instruction, frequently monitoring students that are underachieving, and changing interventions when students are not progressing to their expected level. With response to instruction and systemic intervention strategies, all students can achieve success.
- Tier 1: Core Instruction
- All students receive strong, evidence-based curriculum and methods.
- Tier 2: Targeted Interventions
- Evidence-based, targeted supplemental skill-building interventions for some students who require specific support to make progress.
- Tier 3: Intensive Intervention
- Evidence-based intensive targeted interventions for a few students whose needs are not being met by Tier 1 or 2.
MTSS and Gifted Education
As a part of the MTSS framework, Gifted Education Services offers qualifying students a Tier 3 Intervention in math that includes compacting of grade level standards and accelerated curriculum (curriculum-based services). In addition, qualifying students receive a Tier 2 Intervention in language arts that includes enrichment activities with an emphasis on social, emotional issues (student-based services).
Enfranchising gifted learners in the MTSS framework can provide a pathway to higher achievement for gifted learners as well as all students in the school. Narrowing the range of abilities in a classroom and targeting instruction at the right level of difficulty provides an opportunity for optimal growth.