MTSS & ELs/MLs: Multi-tiered Systems of Support & English/Multilingual Learners

Laminated Guides

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Product Overview

Today, approximately 10 percent of students in grades K-12 are English learners (also called multilingual learners/MLs). The majority of these students face a variety of challenges and and their need for systemic instructional and sometimes social, emotional, and/or behavioral support is often significant. Furthermore, the COVID- 19 pandemic increased the learning gap between English learners and native English speakers, with English learners now requiring even more support to catch up to their peers. Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) (formerly known as Response To Intervention, or RTI) provides an effective framework for assessing and understanding the needs of English learners.

MTSS involves data-based decision-making through the universal screening and progress-monitoring of students, as well as the differentiation of instruction. It also includes the identification and delivery of student services and resources through a multi-tiered model that is generally depicted with three (3) tiers. Although the nature of the challenges faced by most English learners differs from those of struggling native English-speaking students, many English learners also need significant general education supports. This requires schools to plan specifically for English learners when creating their MTSS plan.

This guide provides teachers with academic and behavioral supports and interventions to use with ELs that will help them thrive in the classroom.


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