Tips to Evaluate Your MTSS Program

July 27, 2023

An effective MTSS program can be the difference in academic success for students who need it most. When all laid out, MTSS processes seem pretty straightforward: screen your students, identify learning gaps, provide interventions, and document growth. In reality, strong MTSS practices require explicitly defined processes, research-based tools, and confidence in your data.

Here are some important elements to consider for your MTSS program. 

Screening all Students

The foundation of your MTSS processes should be valid and reliable data. Screening is the mechanism that outlines exactly where students are ready to learn. 

In terms of the data output, screeners that provide nationally-normed scaled scores, suggested tier support levels, and domain-level insights are best for effective decision-making. This allows you to see where your students are performing and where they fall relative to all students who have taken the same assessment. Vertically-scaled assessments ensure you understand where your students are performing, even below or above grade level. 

Another important function you should look for in a screener is that the data actively informs students’ intervention. Choose a program that uses screener data to automatically find skill deficits and match them with activities that target these areas of improvement and group students based on percentile rank.

Progress Monitoring

One of the key pieces of data we receive from screening, beyond tier placement or skill gaps, is which progress monitoring level is identified for students. While individualized instruction is the perfect way to navigate these students back toward grade-level proficiency, progress monitoring shows us what that catch-up process looks like through data. 

Formal progress monitoring is a repeated measurement of performance, using equated probes to determine if students are responding to the interventions they are being given. Effective progress monitoring should automatically graph the rate of improvement data for each student, saving the teachers time and ensuring data is valid and reliable.

Data from your progress monitoring tool is critical for documenting and determining the need for referrals for additional special education testing. 

Like screener data, progress monitoring data should actively inform students’ interventions. After all, for the data to have an impact, it must be acted upon in a timely fashion.  

Meaningful Interventions

While screening and progress monitoring provide essential documentation of where students are and where they’re headed, interventions are the main ingredient for accelerating the path to grade-level proficiency. 

Effective interventions should be driven by data. This ensures the instruction is perfect for the student performance level. Activities engage the student to interact with the skill in multiple ways to have the greatest impact. 

Teachers should have confidence that when students work on their computer-based interventions, they are always engaged in relevant instruction based on the most recent assessment or progress monitoring data. This frees valuable time finding instruction to meet each student’s needs. Instead, the teacher can focus on monitoring how students are progressing on the instruction and celebrating wins. 

Set Your School Up for Success

A robust MTSS process should start with the end in mind and be composed of simple, sustainable processes. Once your plan is in place, invest in professional development to see what areas can be improved or streamlined.

To determine your district’s MTSS score, take our simple quiz!

Classworks for MTSS

With assessments to identify academic needs, automatic progress monitoring to track the effectiveness of interventions, and whole-child insights and reports - Classworks’ MTSS solution is comprehensive and powerful! 

In Classworks, as new screener data becomes available, activities are automatically added and removed from the student’s learning progression to fix learning gaps and build foundational knowledge.

Classworks Progress Monitoring automatically tracks a student’s overall rate of improvement and provides easy-to-read data to quickly determine if the student is responding to the intervention. Students' probe data automatically adjusts their learning path, ensuring they are working on relevant instruction that will lead to growth. 

Districts across the nation choose Classworks for a reason, it works! See how we can help your district by chatting with us on the right of your screen.

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