Kaneland students to get additional system of academic support next year to address learning gaps

Kaneland’s K-12 grade levels will be shifting from Response to Intervention to Multi-Tiered Systems of Support for the 2022-23 school year.

“This is exciting work that has happened over the course of the last couple of years with a very collaborative kindergarten through 12th grade group of educators, interventionists and coordinators,” said Patrick Raleigh, director of educational services for Kaneland 6-12 during Monday’s school board meeting. “They talk about a shift in our current response to interventions or RTI practices toward more personalized and proactive multi-tired systems of support for our students.”

Kaneland will continue intervening with students who show a gap in their progress and achievement in classes.

“A little bit of a difference between our MTSS philosophy here in Kaneland versus what we are used to is our RTI has typically used interventions that are readily available and often those come as computer-based interventions or other purchased interventions and they’re not always responsive to the targeted gaps of students,” Raleigh said. “Over the last few years, we have really honed in on all of our staff identifying what our learning targets are and we’ve done that through “I can’ statements.”

Recent data confirmed teachers are starting off their lessons by identifying what the students are going to be learning.

“The shift then with MTSS comes with intervening proactively, or more proactively with those ‘I can’ statements targeting interventions for very specific learning gaps that we are seeing in the class,” Raleigh said. “It falls in line with the work we’ve done with personalized learning for the last several years and allows for interventionists to be involved more in co-creating personalized goals for students based on their needs.”

MTSS will center heavily around feedback while targeting specific goals for students based on goals that are happening in the classroom.

“We’ve done a lot of work with feedback cycle and collaborating in working through a cycle with our staff and with our students,” Raleigh said. “And that’s probably the biggest shift in philosophy.”

Timelines between RTI and the new MTSS will vary based on the student and the complexity of learning what’s being taught.

“The timelines look a little bit different,” Raleigh said. “Typically in RTI you might be in for four to seven days, somewhere in between there. With MTSS, a student might need a quick two or three days, a boot camp type intervention or may need a longer intervention. It all depends on what the interventionists have decided for that student goal.”

MTSS has been established to support and complement the progression of student learning, ultimately pursing the best outcomes for each student.

“We knew going into the shift to MTSS we wanted to make sure it was purely K-12 and we all had the same focus,” said Sarah Mumm, director of educational services EC-5 for Kaneland. “It may be implemented slightly different based on the developmental level of the students and the grade spans, but the non-negotiables would be our foundation and that was our first task as a steering committee.”

Some of the non-negotiables include flexibility, the integrated intervention of academics and behavior, data analysis and review process-based procedures and an annual data review meeting to identify long-term trends and professional development needs. MTSS intervention will be based on progress on proficiency tables once established or behavioral data established by a collaborative team.