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MTSS Multi-tiered System of Support

What is a Multi-Tiered System of Support?

You may hear your child’s school refer to developing “MTSS” or a Multi-Tiered System of Support. By definition, MTSS is a tiered framework, which promotes school improvement through engaging, research-based academic and behavioral practices.

North Carolina employs a systems approach, using data-driven problem solving to maximize growth for all students.
So, what does this REALLY mean?

It just means that ALL students will be provided the instruction they need to make progress towards standards. All students will receive core instruction with instructional and behavioral practices based on the needs of the district and school populations. The school MTSS team will check to make sure the practices are being used effectively. When groups of students or individual students are not making progress, then the school team will review the instruction, the curriculum, and the environment to consider what changes are necessary to meet the needs of the students. Some students will need changes such as a supplemental layer of support in addition to and connected to core instruction. Again, based on a review of data, a few students will need core, supplemental and intensive layers of support to make growth and progress towards standards. The diagram below is a good visual for this layering of support. 
Layers of Support
Parent Engagement Impacts MTSS
Parent engagement is defined* as a regular, two-way, and meaningful communication about student learning, and other school activities, including:
  • Assisting in their child’s learning by engaging with school personnel;
  • Being actively involved in their child’s education at school;
  • Serving as full partners in their child’s education and being included, as appropriate, in decision-making and on
    advisory boards or committees to assist in the education of their child; and The carrying out of other activities such as those described in section 1116 of ESSA and Public Law 107-110, Title IX, Section (9109 (32).
  • When children are struggling at school, it is important to find out why and to identify supports that are matched to their needs. If you suspect your child is a child with a disability and may need special education services, you have the right to request a full and individual evaluation.
  • MTSS is a school improvement framework. A high level of family involvement is one of the common characteristics of high-performing schools (Henderson & Mapp, 2002).
  • Schools that implement an MTSS examine data around attendance, behavior and academic success. Students with involved parents, no matter what their income or background, are more likely to:
  1. Earn higher grades and test scores, and enroll in higher-level programs
  2. Be promoted, pass their classes, and earn credits
  3. Attend school regularly