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MTSS AND EWS M OVING FROM R EACTION TO P REVENTION : E ARLY I NTERVENTION FOR D ISENGAGED S TUDENTS Melissa Long Janet Stephenson Based on the work of.

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Presentation on theme: "MTSS AND EWS M OVING FROM R EACTION TO P REVENTION : E ARLY I NTERVENTION FOR D ISENGAGED S TUDENTS Melissa Long Janet Stephenson Based on the work of."— Presentation transcript:

1 MTSS AND EWS M OVING FROM R EACTION TO P REVENTION : E ARLY I NTERVENTION FOR D ISENGAGED S TUDENTS Melissa Long Janet Stephenson Based on the work of Dr. Rebecca Sarlo - USF

2 Today’s Objectives Discuss the compelling why of Early Warning Systems Identify early indicators of dropouts Describe the development and utility of Early Warning Systems Explore the multi-faceted nature of engagement Discuss data collection methods appropriate for identifying students who are disengaged academically, behaviorally, socially, or psychologically Discuss effective dropout prevention strategies for each type of disengagement (MTSS) Discuss progress monitoring of students at-risk for dropout

3 …and more What will it take to implement effective Early Warning Systems in Brevard that impact student achievement? What are our major barriers and how will we overcome them?

4 …and lets SIMPLIFY it even more! 1.Find ‘em! What is the problem?  EWS – Who? How BIG? 2.Figure out WHY it is occurring  Patterns, variables, what can we control? 3.Do something with them - MTSS  Get students more engaged  Proactive, preventative 4.Progress Monitor to see if it worked

5 The Goal of Having a Multi-Tiered System of Support in Middle and High Schools is to… A. Identify kids who are at risk. B. Make sure students are on track for graduation – college and career ready. C.Use data to find out our school’s weaknesses and how to best use resources. D.Help students who struggle in math and reading. E.Drop out prevention F.All of the above

6 Stop and Jot What are indicators we know of potential drop outs? How do drop outs affect society?

7 The WHY of our Work: A National Crisis Nearly 30% of all high school students leave high school before graduating Approximately 50% of African American and Latino American Students do not graduate High School Dropouts – Have shorter life spans – Are more likely to be convicted of a crime – Cannot access 90% of the current fastest growing career fields – Cost the nation more than $325 billion in lost wages, taxes, and productivity

8 High School Dilemma Deadly combination – Poor Skill Development – Limited or No Productivity (work completed, practice) How do you remediate gaps AND provide students with access to content simultaneously? How do you sustain student engagement when skill gaps are significant?

9 What We Know Middle- and High-School teams “inherit” the strengths and weaknesses (and Gaps) students bring to the level 64% of students repeating a grade in elementary school eventually drop out 63% of students held back in middle school eventually drop out Successful high school completion begins in kindergarten Most successful high school “intervention” is to ensure that students enter with as much strength as possible

10 What We Know Vertical Programming—articulation K-12- is the most effective way of ensuring that students are prepared for high school Middle- and High-School staff should know student needs at least 12-16 month ahead of time. The best high-school “screening” tool is the compilation of data in K-8 An agreed upon “method” of vertical communication of student data/needs—that leads to vertical programming– is critical

11 What We Know We know DROPPING OUT is a process, not an event.

12 Dropout Prevention cannot be Sole Responsibility of High Schools The Forgotten Middle “Making sure that all eighth-grade students have attained the knowledge and skills that put them on target to becoming ready for college and career is the single most important step that can be taken to improve their college and career readiness.” The Forgotten Middle: Ensuring that All Students are on Target for College and Career Readiness before High School ( ACT, 2008)

13 High School Transition 9 th grade is a “make or break” year More students fail 9 th grade than any other grade level A disproportionate number of held-back 9 th graders subsequently drop out of school Powerful early signs of dropout are evident during the first semester and year of high school Early intervention has proven effective for maintaining students in school

14 Table Talk How does our district currently approach dropout prevention? When are dropout prevention services initiated? For Whom? How effective are the dropout prevention services? What could be done to improve their effectiveness?

15 1. F INDING THEM How BIG is our problem? Who? …and later…any patterns?

16 What are Early Warning Systems? Systems which: Utilize routinely available data housed at the school Help identify students at-risk for dropping out utilizing highly predictive data Allow districts and schools to target interventions that support off-track or at-risk students while they are still in school Allow districts and schools to uncover patterns and root causes that contribute to disproportionate drop-out rates at a particular school or within a particular group of students

17 Developing a District-Wide Early Warning System – Why? The best predictor of future failure is current failure and disengagement Assessing risk across multiple variables allows teams to provide early intervention and prevent disengagement from school and course failures – At-risk and off-track students are identified through analyzing a combination of engagement and academic data. Many students experience course failures as a result of disengagement (e.g., excessive absenteeism, lack of productivity, inattention) Systematically assessing student engagement allows schools to identify students in need of support before they have failed courses or acquired skill deficits related to missed instruction

18 EWS – 2 Key Questions 1.What are our problems? (How many students off track? Who?) 2.Why are they occurring?

19 EWS Indicators Academic – Course Grades – GPA – Credits Earned – Retention – Good Cause Exempt. Engagement – Attendance – Suspension – Tardies – Referral

20 Early Warning Systems Identify all students who miss more than 20% of the available instructional time and/or Identify students through engagement scales or behavior indicators Identify all students who fail their math course Identify all students who fail their English course Flag students who display both engagement and academic failure as high risk

21 Building Your Early Warning System The best predictor of future failure is current failure and disengagement. By the time students enter secondary schools they typically have years of data which indicates whether or not the student is at-risk for school failure and high school dropout. Assessing risk across multiple variables allows teams to provide early intervention and prevent disengagement from school and course failures.

22 High Off Track 3 or more risk factors Extreme Off Track 2-3 Years Behind No chance for graduation in a traditional school setting Disengagement At Risk for Off Track 1 of 4 risk factors indicated On Track No risk factors indicated Off Track 2 of 4 risk factors indicated Students entering with 20% absenteeism and/or 2 or more F’s in 8 th Grade Risk Factors: 1. Disengagement 20% absenteeism 2. Behind in Credits Particularly Core Course Failures 3. GPA less than 2.0 4. Failed FCAT Hendry County Schools

23 At-Risk Eighth Graders Those who attend school less than 80% of the time (78% became drop outs) Those who receive a failing grade in math and/or English (77% became drop outs) Did not have strong predictive power: – Gender, race, age, test scores

24 Attendance: The Canary in the Coal Mine Of these 79 students 78 % could potentially become high school drop outs. 61 drop outs. School More than 9 Absences – students not in school 80% of the time Central9 Clearlake4 Cocoa Beach Jr/Sr2 DeLaura2 Edgewood2 Hoover7 Jackson7 Jefferson4 Johnson12 Kennedy5 Madison9 McNair3 Southwest5 Spacecoast1 Stone7 Westshore0 Total79

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27 Stop and Jot Make a list of indicators you will want in an Early Warning System. Next to each item, record what data source Brevard currently has for retrieving that data.

28 2. F IGURE OUT WHY IT IS OCCURRING Patterns and root causes What can we control?

29 Dropout Early Warning Signs Disengagement Most students dropout mentally before ever physically leaving the school A lack of engagement with school is a precursor to dropping out Indicators of disengagement: – Attendance problems – Classroom/School engagement scales – Behavior marks Students most often cite school-related reasons for dropping out

30 Baumeister & Leary, 1995; Connell & Wellborn, 1990; NRC, 2004; Ryan & Deci, 2000 National Research Council publication, “Engaging schools: Fostering high school students’ motivation to learn” – I can, I want to, I belong – Competence, Autonomy, Belonging The other “ABCs” URL: http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10421.html http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10421.html Student engagement has emerged as the cornerstone of high school reform initiatives.

31 Christenson et al., 200831 Student Engagement Engagement is the primary theoretical model for understanding dropout and is, quite frankly, the bottom line in interventions to promote school completion. Student engagement has emerged as the cornerstone of high school reform initiatives. Both academic and social aspects of school life are integral for student success; engagement at school and with learning are essential intervention considerations.

32 School completion is dependent on more than just academic performance and an absence of inappropriate behavior Yet… academic performance and behavior problems typically represent the totality of what schools monitor A complete early warning system will include identification of students who are socially and psychologically disengaged in addition to academic and behavioral disengagement and provide interventions specific to students’ needs McPartland (1994); Dynarski & Gleason (2002)

33 Engagement is the primary theoretical model for understanding dropout and is, quite frankly, the bottom line in interventions to promote school completion. Finn (1989 & 1993) Participation-Identification Model – Indicators of withdrawal and engagement over several years – Belonging, Identification, Relationships – Engagement has an exponential effect on achievement and overall school success

34 “The Rich Get Richer” Time Spent SuccessfulPerceive more Academically Performanceteacher and Engaged peer support Participation in School Activities Feelings of Connection and Identification w/ School Feelings of competence and control

35 Adapted from Christenson & Anderson, 2002; Newmann, 1992; Russell et al., 2005 Engagement Theory 4 subtypes Academic Behavioral Psychological Social Antidote to: students characterized as bored, unmotivated, and uninvolved Academic – being a good learner; getting good grades Behavioral-good citizen; participant; attending Psychological – believing school matters Social – having a feeling of belonging in school Dropping out is the most extreme form of disengagement

36 Contextual Variable which Impact Student Engagement Family – Academic and motivational support for learning – Goals and expectations of successful school performance – Monitoring/supervision – Learning resources in the home Peers – Educational expectations – Shared common school value – High attendance rates – Academic beliefs and efforts – Peers’ aspiration for learning School – School climate – Instructional programming and learning activities – Mental health support – Clear and appropriate teacher expectations – Goal structure (task vs. ability) – Teacher-student relationships

37 Academic Engagement Indicators – Course Failures Particularly Math and English in Middle School – Credits earned – GPA – Homework completion – Time on task Academic engagement variables have a moderate to large effect on achievement Most visible form of engagement and the most often tracked by school personnel

38 Dropout Early Warning Signs Course Performance Indicators Course grades and failure rates are highly predictive of which students will or will not graduate from high school. Students who fail one or more courses in the fall semester of their first year of high school are significantly more likely to eventually drop out – 85% of students with 0 semester failures in their freshmen year graduated in 4 years – 70% of students with one semester F during 9 th grade graduate in 4 years – Only 55% of students with two semester Fs in 9 th grade graduated in 4 years – Students with 3 or more semester Fs are not likely to graduate from high school

39 Calculating Risk with Course Performance Data Freshman Course Failures, particularly in core academic courses – At the end of each marking period, identify the number of Fs earned by each student – Include both failures in any course and Fs earned in core academic courses Freshman Grade Point Average (GPA) – At the end of each marking period and at the end of the cumulative year, identify students who earn a 2.0 or less Credits earned in each term – Include the total number of credits accumulated per term for each student. – Identify students who fail to earn enough credits to be promoted to 10 th grade (typically 5) – ¼ of the total number of credits required for graduation minus 1

40 Behavioral Engagement Among the most common concerns expressed by educators and parents Indicators – Attendance – Suspensions – Participation in classroom activities Significantly related to academic achievement and school dropout

41 Dropout Early Warning Indicators Attendance Attendance during the first year of high school is directly related to high school completion Even moderate absences (5-10 days) in the first semester of 9 th grade are associated with eventual drop out Attendance is the biggest risk factor for failing 9 th grade 9 th grade failure is the biggest risk factor for high school drop out

42 Dropout Early Warning Indicators Attendance Missing more than 10% of instructional time is significant – Translates to roughly 10 days of school per semester in most high schools Students who miss more than 10% of the first 20 days of school (2 days) are particularly at-risk for high school dropout Any student missing more than 10% of instructional time (at 20 day mark or at each quarter) should be flagged for intervention

43 Behavioral Problems Early violent behavior Chronic misbehavior, especially if it results in suspension or expulsion Criminal behavior in the community Middle and High Schools should identify students who display chronic misbehavior or accrue 2 or more suspension incidences in a semester period Dropout Early Warning Indicators

44 Social Engagement Indicators – Perception of support – Affiliation with school – Sense of belonging – Perception of the value of school and school related activities – Peer group.

45 Identifying Socially Disengaged Students List all students names at grade levels and have adults in school initial next to students with whom they have a personal relationship. – Students with no initials by their names may be socially disengaged Utilize a survey to identify students who are bullied, alienated by peers, or who simply perceive that they have difficulty connecting with peers Employ a systematic student-nomination process within which school personnel indicate the students whom they have concerns regarding peer and/or adult connections Determine which students are not actively engaged in extracurricular activities through the review of club and sport rosters and attendance logs

46 Stop and Jot Make a list of indicators you will want to add to your Early Warning System to monitor students who are socially disengaged. Where will we get this data? Who could monitor?

47 Psychological Engagement Indicators – Sense of confidence and control – Use of learning and problem solving strategies – Investment in learning – Perceived relevance of school for future outcomes Significantly related to academic achievement, school attendance, and high school graduation.

48 Identifying Psychologically Disengaged Students Utilize a survey to assess students’ sense of control, relevance of schoolwork, and future aspirations and goals Employ a systematic student-nomination process within which school personnel indicate the students whom they are concerned regarding their interest in learning or lack post-secondary goals

49 Putting it all together… Middle School Early Warning Systems  School systems should focus on dropout prevention efforts in the beginning of the middle grades at the latest Academic indicators – Fail either math or English Engagement indicators – Attend school less than 80% of the time – Consistently miss instruction due to behavioral issues – Psychological or Social disengagement Lack of peer group Lack of involvement in school extracurricular activities Low educational expectations Retention – Retained 1 or more years Mobility – Multiple schools during educational career

50 Putting it all together… High School Early Warning Systems Academic indicators – GPA less than 2.0 – Failed Courses – Behind in Credits Engagement indicators – Attend school less than 80% of the time – Consistently miss instruction due to behavioral issues – Psychological or Social disengagement Lack of peer group Lack of involvement in school extracurricular activities Low educational expectations Lack of personal relationship with adults at school Retention – Retained 1 or more years Mobility – Multiple schools during educational career

51 2. D O SOMETHING WITH THEM Interventions, MTSS

52 Designing Effective Prevention/Intervention Services Identifying students at risk for dropping out is only the first step Next step is to identify and provide effective and appropriate dropout prevention/intervention strategies Intervention planning is informed by the scope of the identified problem (Tier 1, 2, 3) and the specific needs of the students

53 Dropout Prevention Interventions Dropout prevention programs that are disconnected from the core instructional program of a school are unlikely to be a good use of resources Schools should develop a continuum of intervention supports which are readily accessible as soon as a student is indicated as at-risk or off-track

54 Early Intervention is the Answer Disengagement is a gradual process that includes impaired or reduced participation, less successful outcomes, and reduced identification and belonging Identifying students at the first sign of withdrawal significantly improves the likelihood of re-engagement and successful school completion Shift from a focus of preventing negative outcomes, such as dropout, to promoting student competence and support

55 High Off Track 3 or more risk factors Extreme Off Track 2-3 Years Behind No chance for graduation in a traditional school setting Disengagement At Risk for Off Track 1 of 4 risk factors indicated On Track No risk factors indicated Off Track 2 of 4 risk factors indicated Students entering with 20% absenteeism and/or 2 or more F’s in 8 th Grade Risk Factors: 1. Disengagement 20% absenteeism 2. Behind in Credits Particularly Core Course Failures 3. GPA less than 2.0 4. Failed FCAT Hendry County Schools

56 Given the following… A common theme among effective practices is that they have a positive effect on the motivation of individual students because they address underlying psychological variables such as competence, control, beliefs about the value of education, and a sense of belonging. National Research Council, 2004, p. 212

57 Stop and Jot What do schools already have in place? – Psychological – Social – Academic – Behavior How else could we be proactive and preventative?

58 Intervention Linked to Underlying Barrier Mentoring programs Goal Setting & career planning support Frequent progress reports Targeted rewards Mandatory study hall Mandatory homework help Study skills classes Targeted, differentiated instruction Additional instructional time Pre-teach essential skills, content, and vocabulary Review/Reteach prerequisite skills to address the learning gap Prevention (requires vertical articulation with middle/elementary school and early identification of at- risk students) CAUTION: Failed Learners often become disengaged over time and may require both categories of intervention support Disengaged Learners Failed Learners

59 Effective Dropout Prevention Services Effective Schools and Teachers Promote: Students’ understanding of what it takes to learn Confidence in their capacity to succeed in school A sense of belonging by personalizing instruction, showing an interest in students’ lives, and creating a supportive, caring social context. High expectations for all students And, Provide: Challenging instruction Support for meeting high standards Opportunities for choice and control Curriculum and instruction that is relevant to adolescents’ experiences, cultures, and long-term goals National Research Council, 2004

60 First Steps The most important first step in successfully implementing MTSS/RTI and increasing learning is ensuring the quality of full class instruction. The least expensive way to increase learning at your school is to improve full class instruction. The change that will affect the most number of students at your school is to improve full class instruction.

61 Improving Tier 1 Syllabus Pre test – prerequisite assessment Common Assessments – analyzing and using the data Differentiation of content, process, product Proactively seeking out data of incoming students Vertical alignment between 6 th & 7th grade Vertical alignment between 8 th & 9 th grade

62 Group Collaboration Intervention Jigsaw Review assigned material Discuss most important points Prepare to share back with your jigsaw group You will be given 20 minutes to complete these tasks

63 Return to your jigsaw group You will have 20 minutes to share information Share any additional dropout prevention/intervention strategies that your schools have implemented with success. Given the information shared, discuss potential next steps for your school sites. How can you support this next step? You will have 10 minutes to discuss these points Group Collaboration

64 Helping Students who Are Off Track Tier 2 - Academic – Credit Retrieval – Reading Intervention Class – Math Intervention Class – Learning strategies – AVID – Academic Tutoring – No Zero Zone Tier 2 – Behavior – Mentor Programs – Check In/Check out – Goal Setting – Behavior Contracts – Attendance Contracts

65 Support for FEW (Intensive, Individualized Instruction – Tier 3) Academics More intense targeted skill interventions Customized interventions Frequent progress monitoring to guide intervention design Behavior Student centered planning Customized function based interventions Frequent progress monitoring to guide intervention design

66 Infrastructure of a Multi-Tiered System of Supports Think about…could we… Direct a significant amount of resources to critical transition years (6 th and 9 th ) to prevent academic and behavioral problems Provide opportunities for mentoring, advisement, and academic support within the master schedule for all students Include classes which provide instruction in organization, study skills, note-taking, problem solving, and communication in the school’s master schedule Intensify instruction by providing additional time and personnel or smaller class sizes for classes which typically result in high rates of course failures

67 Scheduling of Multi-Tiered Supports Suggestions – Are we already doing these? Build time into the school’s master schedule to allow for weekly common planning/PLC time for content teams and for cross content teams at least monthly Intervention teachers plan with core content teachers and align intervention strategies with core instruction Develop school leadership team members who can monitor and participate in the work of all other school teams

68 4. P ROGRESS M ONITORING Is what we are doing working?

69 Progress Monitoring the EWS The indicators in the Early Warning System can continue to be used to monitor the progress of students participating in dropout prevention interventions Interventions should be considered effective for students who move back on-track for graduation Students who continue to be identified as off- track for graduation may require more intense drop out prevention interventions. When evaluating results, be sure to check for delayed outcomes associated with early interventions

70 What Schools Do Matters! Freshman with weak academics entering high school who reported having a positive 9 th grade year were almost twice as likely to graduate from high school than students who entered with strong academics but reported a negative 9 th grade academic experience Dropout prevention strategies which focus on improving school climate, academic rigor, and student support and monitoring have been found to reduce dropout rates by as much as 50%

71 Where are we? What will it take to implement effective Early Warning Systems in Brevard that impact student achievement? What are our major barriers and how will we overcome them?

72 Christenson et al., 2008 Intervene early, persistently, and across the contexts of school peers, school adults, and the home and community to change student developmental trajectories. Take Away Message…

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74 References & Resources Anderson, A. R., Christenson, S. L., & Lehr, C. A. (2004). School completion and student engagement: Information and strategies for educators. In A. S. Canter, L. Z. Paige, M. D. Roth, I. Romero, & S. A. Carroll (Eds.), Helping children at home and at school II: Handouts for families and educators (pp. S2-65–S2-68). Bethesda, MD: National Association of School Psychologists. Retrieved October 25, 2006 from http://www.naspcenter.org/principals/nasp_compleducators.pdf http://www.naspcenter.org/principals/nasp_compleducators.pdf Appleton, J., Christenson, S.L., Kim, D., & Reschly, A. (2006). Measuring cognitive and psychological engagement: Validation of the Student Engagement Instrument. Journal of School Psychology, 44, 427-445. Christenson, S.L., & Anderson, A. R. (2002). Commentary: The centrality of the learning context for students’ academic enabler skills. School Psychology Review,31(3), 378-393 Christenson & Thurlow (2004). School dropouts: Prevention, considerations, interventions, and challenges. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 13(1), 36- 39. Christenson, S.L., Reschly, A.L., Appleton, J.J., Berman, S., Spanjers, D., & Varro, P. (2008). Best practices in fostering student engagement. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds). Best Practices in School Psychology (5th Ed). National Association of School Psychologists.

75 References & Resources Finn, J.D. (1989). Withdrawing from school. Review of Educational Research, 59, 117- 142. Fredericks, J.A., Blumenfeld, P.C., & Paris, A.H. (2004). School engagement: Potential of the concept, state of the evidence. Review of Educational Research, 74, 59-109. Lehr, Sinclair, & Christenson (2004). Addressing student engagement and truancy prevention during the elementary school years: A replication study of the Check & Connect model. Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk, 9(3),279-301. National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine (2004). Engaging schools: Fostering high school students’ motivation to learn. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press Reschly, A. & Christenson, S.L. (2007). Reading and School Completion: Critical Linkages Among Reading Performance, Grade Retention, Special Education Placements and High School Dropout. Manuscript under review. Sinclair, Christenson, Evelo, & Hurley. (1998). Dropout prevention for high risk youth with disabilities: Efficacy of a sustained school engagement procedure. Exceptional Children, 65(1), 7-21. Sinclair, Christenson, & Thurlow (2005). Promoting School completion of urban secondary youth with emotional or behavioral disabilities. Exceptional Children, 71, 465-482.


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