School-wide PBIS Tiered Fidelity Inventory (SWPBIS TFI)

School Leadership Teams assess the fidelity of implementation to identify what parts of their MTSS are already in place, what needs to be improved, and what still needs to be done. 

School Leadership Teams need to know how well PBIS is implemented in their school. The SWPBIS TFI lists the core features of PBIS for each of the three tiers. Each tier can be assessed separately.

The SWPBIS TFI combines features from a variety of fidelity assessments. The result is a single, reliable assessment to assist with implementing and sustaining the three tiers of PBIS.

The school leadership team and other invited respondents review and score the features. Conducting the assessment helps teams examine PBIS in their school in the following areas:

  • Evidence-based practices for improving student behavior.
  • Systems that create a continuum of support to address the variety of behavior needs among students.
  • Data and evaluation for behavior.

The SWPBIS TFI was developed by the OSEP Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports.

Administering the Assessment

Administering the Assessment

A SWPBIS TFI Facilitator administers the assessment at a school leadership team meeting. The SWPBIS TFI Facilitator should be external (e.g., from an ISD or district) rather than be school staff. The team should invite other staff members if they are knowledgeable about the features being assessed at the meeting. For example, if the team is assessing tier 3, staff that is familiar with student behavior plans should be included.

The School Leadership Team and other respondents participate in the assessment as a group, reviewing each item listed in the tier that is being assessed. The respondents use a simultaneous public voting protocol (so everyone shares their score at the same time) to determine a score for each item.

Assessment Schedule

Assessment Schedule
  • Before implementation: Administer the assessment for a tier right before its implementation. Use the data to help develop an action plan.
    • Schools participating in the Intensive Technical Assistance training:
      • Tier 1 – After the School-wide PBIS (elementary) or Positive School Climate (secondary) Day 2 training.
      • Tier 2 – After the Intervention System training.
      • Tier 3 – After the Intensifying Interventions training.
  • During implementation: After the initial assessment, administer at least annually. Additional progress monitoring every two to three months is recommended until the tier is implemented with fidelity. 70% is the criterion score for each Tier and the Total Score. After each assessment, revise the action plan as needed.
  • After implementation: Continue to administer the assessment annually and check for sustained implementation.

Estimated Time

Estimated Time
  • 30 minutes for each tier.
  • Allow 45-60 minutes for each tier for the initial assessment.

Data Entry

Data Entry
  • The PBIS assessment coordinator or designated school-level user enters item scores into the PBIS Assessment database.
  • Each item is grouped into one of three scales (the three tiers) that make up the SWPBIS TFI. The scales are further broken down by subscales. The PBIS assessment coordinator or designated school-level user enters the subscale, scale, and total scores in MiMTSS Data System.