When a school is using MTSS, instructional strategies and programs are regularly reviewed and sometimes redesigned. Any time instructional practices are needed, schools and districts rely on their content specialists to help determine the best approach.
Whether at an intermediate school district (ISD), district, or school level, implementation teams will need to call upon behavior and reading specialists for their expertise.
Designing School-wide MTSS Programs
Schools implementing MTSS through the TA Center need to establish behavior and reading programs. Behavior specialists (such as social workers or school psychologists) should be part of the teams that implement Postive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) in elementary schools or Positive School Climate in secondary schools. For example, school leadership teams should consult with a behavior specialist to identify a good set of school expectations, and the best methods for teaching the expectations to students. For reading programs, a reading specialist should be heavily involved in selecting the appropriate instructional strategies for schools and districts.
Designing Individual Student Plans
Students who struggle with tiers 1 and 2 need indivualized tier 3 interventions. The interventions are designed by the student support team. The individualized plans should be made with the input of a content specialist as a member of the team.
Providing Technical Assistance
Content specialists don't just help create the programs; they need to be able to support educators directly. As the experts on the instructional strategies, content specialists provide professional development on how to deliver practices within MTSS in the school setting. Professional development may be needed whenever new strategies are introduced, or if assessment data show practices need to be improved.