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Special Education

The Massachusetts Tiered System of Supports (MTSS)

Massachusetts has developed a blueprint outlining a single system of supports that is responsive to the academic and non-academic needs of all students. This blueprint, the Massachusetts Tiered System of Supports (MTSS), provides a framework for school improvement that focuses on system level change across the classroom, school, and district to meet the academic and non-academic needs of all students, including students with disabilities, English language learners, and students who are academically advanced. It guides both the provision of high-quality core educational experiences in a safe and supportive learning environment for all students and academic and/or non-academic targeted interventions/supports for students who experience difficulties and for students who have already demonstrated mastery of the concept and skills being taught.

Schools and districts are encouraged to work toward an integrated approach to support students' academic and social-emotional competencies. All students receive academic instruction and behavioral supports that include differentiation and extension activities and are guided by the three Universal Design for Learning principles (multiple means of representation, multiple means of action and expressions, and multiple means of engagement).

MTSS Application to Students with IEP's
Relevant information from students' Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) is incorporated into the design and implementation of instruction and assessments to enable students eligible for special education services to access fully the system of tiered instruction and non-academic supports.

Determining eligibility for Specific Learning Disabilities
Policies and procedures must be in place to comply with Special Education Regulations regarding the use of tiered instruction to determine eligibility for Specific Learning Disabilities.

View the forms and technical assistance documents that are to be used when finding a student eligible for special education with a Specific Learning Disability (SLD).



Last Updated: October 11, 2011
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