According to research, children do best academically when the “overlapping spheres” of family, school, and community have collaboratively-developed shared goals. Within MTSS, an expectation is that supports are tiered and fluid – but not finite. Similarly, multi-tiered family, school, and community partnering ensures that supports exist at the universal, targeted, and intensive levels. The layers of these supports are available according to identified needs, but they are not permanent. We label the supports, not the individuals, and the supports are provided when matched to need. In multi-tiered partnering (as in MTSS), the problem solving process is transparent, and everyone is “on the team and at the table” (CDE, 2009) sharing information and decision-making.
What is Multi-Tiered Family, School, and Community Partnering Across the Tiers? Effective partnerships include parents, families, students, community members, and educators. Indicators of an effective partnership include 1) sharing information, 2) problem-solving, and 3) celebrating student successes. Central to effective partnership is the recognition of shared responsibility and shared ownership of student challenges and successes. In forming partnerships, it is important to nurture the collaborative process. To develop true collaboration, parents and families must be fundamentally involved in the entire educational experience. Families should be recognized as having important information and expertise that they can contribute to the partnership. It is important for school personnel to provide the families with information and empower them as equal partners in supporting their children’s learning. At Tier I, family involvement in school decision making leads to an improved positive school climate. Parents and families are seen as key partners in all aspects of RtI and MTSS, but their role may shift at each level of support. In particular, at the targeted (Tier II) and intensive (Tier III) levels, family expertise regarding the individual student is vital. At these tiers, members of the student’s family may provide information about the student and strategies that will lead to improved student outcomes. Collaboration is more than simply working together and more than just linkage; it is agreeing to formally work together to achieve mutually desired outcomes. If one is to believe the adage, “It takes a village to raise a child,” then the community has a vested interest in supporting a positive school climate, which research has shown leads to better academic results. It is critical that schools recognize that cultural understanding requires more than just awareness. Understanding and respect for cultural differences is vital when attempting to engage families and foster community support
Below you will find resources for parents
MTSS FSCP Fact Sheet
Response to Intervention (RtI) Family & Community Partnering: “On the Team and at the
Student Grade and Attendance Information