Multi-tiered system of supports (MTSS)


Quakertown Community School District is committed to providing high-quality instruction and support to promote the highest achievement of all students. At the school level, the Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) is a framework used to maximize the success of all students. This information provides an overview of the Multi-Tiered System of Supports for parents and answers common questions.

MTSS Tiers

What is a Multi-Tiered System of Supports? 

  • A Multi-Tiered System of Supports is not a separate program or class but rather a way of organizing instruction and intervention to help all students. The goal of the multi-tiered     framework is to provide high-quality instruction and support based on student need. 

  • This framework also helps educators by providing information (data) to identify students needing additional support (academic and behavioral.)

What is Response to Intervention?

  • Response to Intervention (RtI) is the practice of using data to help educators match the correct level of support to what students need. 

  • Educators monitor student Response to Intervention to determine whether they show adequate growth. Students who do not show adequate growth, may be connected to increasingly intensive and validated interventions.

What are the key components of a Multi-Tiered System of Supports?       

  • High-quality core instruction

  • Universal screening to identify students needing supplemental support

  • Shared ownership across staff to enhance outcomes for all students

  • Data-based decision making to inform instruction and intervention 

  • Multiple tiers of academic and behavioral support that are progressively more intensive 

  • Response to Intervention process to inform instructional intensification

  • Family engagement to work collaboratively toward positive outcomes

  • Professional learning opportunities that build capacity and sustainable outcomes

What are tiered supports? 

A Multi-Tiered System of Supports organizes instruction and intervention into tiers, or levels of support: 

  • Tier 1 – All students receive high-quality core instruction. Tier 2 – In addition to Tier 1, students needing more support also receive small-group intervention and support. The difference can be increased time, smaller groups of students or narrowed focus of instruction.

  • Tier 3 – In addition to Tiers 1 and/or 2, students receiving Tier 3 intervention receive the most intensive support based on individual need. The difference is individual team-based  problem-solving, increased time, smaller groups of students and narrowed focus of instruction.


  How does the school identify and support students? 

  • During the year, schools screen all students through academic and behavioral assessments to inform schools of students that may benefit from additional support.  

  • For the students needing more support, a school-based team uses a problem-solving process to plan interventions and monitor progress (Tiers 2 and 3). 

  • Tier 2 small-group problem-solving teams may include principals, educators, school counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, instructional coaches, intervention specialists, and parents. 

  • Tier 3 individual problem-solving teams should include parents and staff knowledgeable about the student, grade-level expectations, and the problem-solving process. 

  • At Tier 3, individual diagnostic assessments may be administered to help plan the intervention. 

  • Parents/guardians are not required to attend problem-solving meetings, but collaboration between families and the school are essential for continued student success.

What can I expect from schools with an MTSS framework?

  • Information on my student’s progress in meeting grade-level academic standards.

  • Notice of academic or behavior concern.

  • Instruction and intervention that is matched to my student’s needs.

  • Feedback on how my student is responding and making progress.

  • Continued family involvement and partnership to help achieve student success.


Where can I find additional information on Multi-Tiered System of Supports? 

MTSS logo

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