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Blog May 12, 2021

Introducing Turnaround for Children’s Tiered System of Supports Health Assessment

One way in which schools can determine if their efforts of providing holistic and integrated supports to their students are effective and help to create equitable outcomes for students is to conduct an assessment of their Tiered System of Supports.” 


  By Dawn Foreman, M. Ed. and Renee Prince, LCSW 

In January 2021, we shared with you our approach to Tiered Systems of Supports, a framework for an adaptive, responsive continuum of integrated supports for all students. Tiered Systems of Supports are developed and implemented in service of holistic outcomes – social, emotional, motivational, cognitive, academic – and in service of equity, so that all students can thrive. 

However, based on their context, schools will have varying degrees of implementation and levels of effectiveness when it comes to the support they are able to provide to students. For example, many schools have limited resources (financial, staffing, etc.), which can also impact the quality of the support that is provided. Therefore, it is important that schools have a tool they can use to determine how to best leverage the resources they currently have to meet the holistic needs of all students. We ask the question: How are you currently assessing the quality of your Tiered System of Supports to ensure it produces equitable outcomes for students? 

In the spirit of continuous improvement, we are sharing with you a way to assess the current functioning of your school’s Tiered System of Supports processes. You can assess your system in whole or in part on an ongoing basis to improve and refine essential Tiered System of Supports components. 

Turnaround for Children’s Tiered System of Supports Health Assessment is grounded in our Whole-Child Design Blueprint, a visioning tool that helps educators like you look through the lens of whole-child development and design and take action toward the change you seek, to improve outcomes for students.  

The Tiered System of Supports Health Assessment assesses both the adaptive and technical aspects of your Tiered System of Supports. There are core integrated components and mindsets that we believewhen applied and implemented with fidelity, will yield a Tiered System of Supports that will provide equitable outcomes for all students through a wholechild lens: 

  • Whole-child aligned key principles of Tiered System of Supports 
  • Processes for identifying and referring students to receive supports when universal, Tier 1 proactive supports are not meeting students’ needs 
  • Tier 2 and Tier 3 meeting logistics and functioning 
  • Tier 2 and Tier 3 student support planning 
  • Processes for implementing and progress monitoring supports 

Our Tiered System of Supports Health Assessment should be completed by at least two members of your Tiered System of Supports team in order to provide differing perspectivesideallythe best data will be gathered if all members of your team complete the assessment togetherBy completing the Tiered System of Supports Health Assessment, you can reflect on the data as it currently stands, highlight strength areas, make some decisions about what to prioritize for improvement and monitor progress. 

The following tools are available for use in assessing your Tiered System of Supports: 

Access the Tiered System of Support Health Assessment tools and resources on the Toolbox by creating a free account.