Before, During and After Meeting Activities: Teachers and Other Meeting Participants
Before the Meeting:
There are a few things the referring teacher will do before the meeting:
- Complete the Referral Form and submit it to the lead facilitator of the Tier 2 or Tier 3 meeting.
- Prepare any concrete data they would like to bring to the meeting.
- The Data Collection Checklist can assist with gathering the appropriate data.
- Reflect on mindset and practices and come prepared to share those reflections during the meeting.
- The Identification Phase Guiding Questions and Referral Phase Guiding Questions can assist in the reflection process.
Engage in conversation with the student’s caregiver(s) to ensure they are aware of the concern and to begin to forge a partnership for supporting the student.
During the Meeting:
The facilitator begins all Tier 2 and Tier 3 meetings by welcoming the group; stating the purpose, objectives, and agenda items; reviewing the meeting norms; and reminding the team of the expectations for those fulfilling the team roles. The teacher (or referring individual) is responsible for verbally sharing the details of the referral, their reflections on student context, and their own individual mindset and practices to date. This is an opportunity for other relevant data to be shared that will support the referral. The teacher (or referring individual) should come prepared, as members of the team will ask clarifying and probing questions to facilitate a process of deeper reflection of the student’s context.
The next part of the meeting is for all participants to review the data more deeply and consider possible goals for the student, based on the presentation and data. It is helpful for the teacher to have some ideas about goals in mind as this will contribute to the overall goal-setting process. After a pre-established amount of time, team members take turns, sharing 1-2 possible goals for the student. For Tier 3 meetings, specifically, one of the recommendations may be to keep the Tier 2 goals, revise them, or create new goals. The referring teacher listens to ideas and discussion to absorb and process possible goal(s). After team members have shared, the referring teacher synthesizes goal suggestions inclusive of their perspective.
Creating a Student Support Plan
The process of creating a student support plan involves documenting concerns about the student, determining goals, and allocating resources to meet those goals. See the Student Support Plan & Review tool as an example of documentation for this plan.
Goals and interventions are not the same. Often, school teams with the best intentions jump to selecting supports without first establishing the outcome to be achieved. Goals provide the destination, while interventions provide the roadmap and create a context for students where they can be successful.
Goals should be framed by taking into consideration how the student is currently functioning and what will be different in the future – in other words, a developmentally appropriate vision or target for what a student can realistically make progress toward. However, if the Tier 2 or Tier 3 team is unclear about where a student is and how far they are from the goal, it will be challenging to set realistic goals, and the intervention/responses will be inappropriate. Therefore, it is imperative to take the time to collect a holistic set of data about the student.
With that said, goals should not be the same for every student (particularly for students receiving Tier 3 supports). An equitable approach to goal setting is one that takes into consideration student context (environment, relationships, experiences) and the student’s unique strengths and areas for growth. With that said, while we don’t want to set the standard too high, we also want to be careful not to aim too low. Students should be challenged based upon their unique academic and social-emotional profile. In addition to that, educators must be mindful about personal biases and the unintended role they might play in determining goals.
- Be clear and concise
- Be written in simplistic terms
- Be based on data collected or observed, not inferred
- Be measurable to support progress monitoring
- Reflect consideration of student development and assets and be scaffolded, if necessary
- Indicate a time frame for accomplishment
- Be written in a positive tone that reflects growth, not from a perspective of deficit
It’s now time to determine the goals. All team members discuss goal suggestions, narrowing down to what is most pertinent and realistic. In Tier 2 meetings, the referring teacher selects 1-3 goal(s) for the student, ensuring they are positively framed, time bound and measurable. The note taker records goal(s) on the Student Support Plan and reiterates the final decision to the group. In Tier 3 meetings, the caregiver is given the opportunity to share their ideas, and the team decides on the goals.
See the Student Support Plan & Review tool for an example of how goal setting can be incorporated into documentation.
Intervention Support Planning
Once the team has clarity about goals, they can consider what support is needed to help reach the goals. The following guidance does not champion any particular intervention; however, we know that teachers have different degrees of capacity, students have varying needs, and schools have varying resources. Instead, the list below is intended to provide some support in determining interventions that are appropriate, realistic selected with the whole child in mind.
Some criteria to consider when selecting interventions include:
- What do I need to do to support this student in meeting the goal?
- How far is the student from meeting the goal?
- What assets does the student/family have?
- What level of capacity is necessary to implement the intervention?
- What other resources can be leveraged?
- How will this impact other students?
- How much time will it take?
Teacher/staff capacity and needed support should be taken into consideration as well. Instead of focusing only on a narrow set of targeted interventions, consider holistic supports that:
- create a more supportive environment
- leverage positive developmental relationships
- provide integrated supports for skills and mindsets aligned to the Whole-Child Design Blueprint
During development and prior to finalization of the Student Support Plan, teachers and other stakeholders should have the opportunity to comment on any potential support needed for implementation of the selected support. In addition to the goals and interventions, progress monitoring plan should be discussed and documented on the student support plan by the note taker.
A date to review progress should be scheduled prior to ending the meeting. The protocols discussed here allow for a more timely, targeted discussion about students, resulting in a more productive meeting. It facilitates increased time and space for reflecting and supports equitable contribution for development of a holistic plan.
After the Meeting:
Within 24-48 hours of the Tier 2 or Tier 3 meeting, meeting participants will receive a copy of the Student Support Plan. The timeliness of the plan being made available is crucial to supporting the student. From now until the date of the review meeting, educators and other stakeholders identified in the support plan implement the planned strategies of support and should keep track of the progress the student is making toward the goal.
The data collected on implementation of supports will be brought back to the predetermined review meeting to discuss progress and next steps. Prior to implementation, it is ideal that the teacher take an opportunity to deepen their relationship with the student by reviewing their goals with them and talking with them about how they will be supported in reaching those goals. This practice provides transparency and will help the student take a more active role by voicing their perspective on their experience of the learning environment.