November 2012

Studies show that RtI is most effective when it is implemented for academics and behavior (PBIS) simultaneously. To encourage schools to implement system-wide RtI, the center will (among other changes) retire our e-newsletters that addressed these aspects separately. Anyone who was signed up for either of these e-newsletters is now automatically subscribed to the new e-newsletter that will have updates on center activities covering all aspects of RtI for academics and behavior, important announcements about tools and trainings, and a success story or two. Please share this e-newsletter and encourage your colleagues to sign up!

SIR District Reports 

Logins to the School-wide Implementation Review (SIR) are available for district leadership teams who may be interested in viewing both individual and composite school reports and results within their district. The information found in composite reports may assist district leadership teams, alongside building principals, in finding common strengths and gaps in RtI implementation to assist in action planning. If schools in your district have taken the SIR, you may view their results online. Please remember that these results are self-assessments only—schools and districts will not be punished or rewarded based on their scores. The purpose of the SIR is simply to illustrate strengths and weakness to help school teams prioritize their next steps. Our hope is that districts find value in creating a systems implementation view. If no schools in your district have taken the SIR, please encourage them to do so. Ideally school teams would attend one of our Wisconsin RtI Foundational Overviews, during which the SIR is completed; a webinar is available to assist teams who are unable to attend. 

Obtaining District Username and Password

  1. Select Launch the SIR 
  2. Choose District Login. If you do not already have your login information, you will have the option to click a link to have your login information emailed to you. All district login information will be emailed directly to the district administrator.
  3. Login information may also be obtained from your Wisconsin RtI Center regional technical assistance coordinator. You may find contact information for your coordinator here

New on the Websites

A new page has been developed for intensive interventions for academics. This page includes guidance on selecting an intensive interventions, as well as a filterable tool.

New PBIS coaching resources are available.  

The RtI website now has a section for coaches, which can be accessed from the home page. The page discusses where coaching fits into an RtI framework, what a systems coach does, and why engaging in systems coaching is a crucial enterprise for all schools as they work toward RtI implementation. More resources will be added as they are developed.

The annual evaluation report is now available on our website. 

New Screening and Progress Monitoring Training 

The center has revised the Screening and Progress Monitoring training that was piloted last fall. This two-day training has been updated with new materials and activities. Sessions will be offered beginning this winter. See our events calendar for more details. 

Success Stories

Milwaukee Public Schools

We were very pleased to receive quite a few success stories from Milwaukee Public Schools. The success story for the entire district is included in this newsletter, but the stories for the individual schools are just as inspiring. Follow the links below to read more on our website.

Reagan IB High School

Wedgewood Park Middle School

Milwaukee French Immersion

Curtin Leadership Academy (K-8) 

Thurston Woods Elementary 

Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) began implementation of PBIS with the first cohort of schools in August 2009, with a new cohort beginning in August 2010, and the final cohort beginning in August 2011. MPS is now in the third year of implementation of PBIS in the district, and every school is implementing PBIS. During the academic year 2010–11 with 95 schools implementing tier 1, the district was able to recover 40,317 student days lost to the process of being suspended. The percent of suspensions due to learning environment violations decreased from 61 percent of all referrals, to 46 percent, allowing more time for all students to learn. With the continued implementation in 2011–12 the district was able to recover 1,555 student days lost to suspensions and 2,784 hours of administration time handling all incident referrals in the buildings.

Following the district motto of “One Team, One Goal, One MPS,” everyone has worked together in this large endeavor of making PBIS successful in the entire district to ensure all students are successful. The district has provided a variety of resources and general information for all staff, students, parents, and other interested parties to use to help increase their understanding of PBIS and to help with their implementation of PBIS within their building. The district has an up-to-date RtI website, a YouTube Channel, regular training sessions, and a biweekly PBIS newsletter. Over 840 staff members have attended at least one training this year on tier 1, tier 2, or tier 3. Many staff members have attended multiple trainings. The district has encouraged all schools to share their best practices and resources with other schools so all students can benefit from the positive affects of PBIS.

A post- System-wide Evaluation Tool was conducted at 53 schools in March with 46 meeting fidelity in Expectations Taught and 50 meeting fidelity overall. All 143 schools took the Benchmarks of Quality and 112 met fidelity. 

The positive impact of PBIS in all school buildings has been felt throughout the district even more this academic year with all 141 schools implementing some tier of PBIS. For the school year 2011–12, 46 schools began to implement tier 1 in their buildings, with 95 beginning tier 2 and tier 3 interventions. Throughout the entire district 62 schools have decreased their suspensions from 2010–11. District suspensions were down 3,712. For the entire 2011–12 school year, 69,958 students were never suspended, which is 81 percent of all students in the district. Total days students have been suspended were down 7,126 from the year prior, with total suspensions down two years in a row over a total of 13 percent. 

With the 95 schools implementing tier 2, there are 3,979 tier 2 interventions documented online with the progress monitoring software, EXCEED RtI. For 2012–13 all schools will be implementing the additional tier 2 interventions of Social Academic Instructional Groups and Behavior Assessment/ Intervention Plan as more intense interventions. During the school year 30 schools will also be implementing tier 3 interventions of Wraparound and RENEW.

Having PBIS throughout the district has really changed the climate throughout every building. Staff members have been given the tools to work with all students and interventions to work with students. Students are no longer being suspended at the rate they once were, so all students are receiving more instructional time. Staff members are also using less of their time dealing with behavioral problems and can spend more time teaching and engaging students in the learning process.

Milwaukee College Prep

The Milwaukee College Prep RtI leadership team demonstrates a proactive, whatever-it-takes approach when meeting the needs of its students, and it shows. The team of 10 discussed a teacher-friendly, no-excuses approach that requires parent involvement while keeping the needs of the child at the center of the conversation.

Based in the Marva Collins philosophy of “students don’t fail, teachers do,” this K–8 public charter school located in Milwaukee leads its RtI efforts with a strong universal instructional and behavioral base that is monitored via classroom visits, weekly professional development, and data. Teachers are expected to try multiple classroom interventions before a student’s needs are presented to the leadership team. 

The RtI leadership team has developed a dean-driven process for supporting teachers. An academic dean meets with grade-level teachers on a weekly basis to maintain and support their universal instruction while emphasizing that the teacher is the expert. Once a teacher has exhausted classroom protocols for meeting a student’s behavioral or academic needs, he or she has a conversation with the behavioral dean who using a scripted approach, talks through other options that may or may not lead to the completion of an RtI referral form.

Data is collected and monitored in four areas for all students: lifework (homework), discipline, attendance, and weekly assessments. At the intervention table, teachers, administrators and the leadership team look at data for indicators that the student is making progress, needs adaptations in the intervention, or a completely new course of action.

This strong collaborative effort requires perseverance and a constant feedback loop. One team member, a social worker, stated that we have the really hard conversations with the understanding that we always assume the best.

Spring 2011 Data

Eighty-five percent of grade 3–8 students scored proficient/advanced on the WKCE in mathematics; 90 percent scored the same in reading.

In Spring 2010, all of our grade 4 students scored 100 percent advanced or proficient on the social studies section of the WKCE test. All of our grade 8 students scored advanced or proficient on the reading section of the WKCE test.