Literacy predicts student success more than good grades

Literacy Development in Primary Grades Is More Important than an A+

Categories: Assessment, Instruction, Literacy, RTI

Today, literacy skills can be linked directly to employment and earnings, which are ultimately linked to poverty, incarceration, and massive expenditures for welfare supports. Over the past half century, the world has been losing jobs designed for an economy needing low- or semiskilled workers. Our economy now demands a  more highly educated workforce. Read more

Tier 3 interventions necessitate thinking outside of the box to best use what technology and resources schools have on hand.

The Life-Saving Work of Tier 3 Interventions

Categories: RTI

In our books, It’s About Time: Planning Interventions and Extensions in Elementary/Secondary School (Buffum & Mattos, 2015) we solicited chapters from twenty-four schools that had successfully found time to give students what we call “Core and More.” In these schools, ALL students had access to essential grade-level standards, as well as access to Tier 2 supports with these essential standards. In addition, some students in these schools also received intensive Tier 3 interventions to remediate skills and knowledge that should have been acquired in previous years. In this particular post, I’d like to expand on the importance of Tier 3 interventions. Read more

Education is like nautical navigation.

Diminishing Barriers to Learning

Categories: RTI

Sneakers, planes, rockets, and boats. Getting from place to place happens with a structured itinerary, whether one is on foot, in the air, in space, or on water. Education, like navigation, embraces the planning, collaboration, and knowledge. Read more

How can we extend and enrich learning?

That Pesky Fourth PLC Question

Categories: Assessment, Authors, PLC, RTI

There are four questions that drive the conversations of members of collaborative planning teams have as part of their Professional Learning Communities.  These questions are (DuFour, DuFour, Eaker, & Many, 2010):

  1. What is it we want our students to learn?
  2. How will we know if each student has learned it?
  3. How will we respond when some students do not learn it?
  4. How can we extend and enrich the learning for students who have demonstrated proficiency? (p. 119)

For the past several decades, schools have focused on these questions to impact students’ learning. Well, really, teams have more likely focused on the first three questions.  Read more

Each teacher's success is just as important as each student's success.

Every Student Counts Only When Every Teacher Counts

Categories: PLC, RTI

Teaching is the noblest of all professions, and no other career plays a more powerful role in shaping who we are, how we think, and what we are capable of doing as human beings. Teachers help their students become better thinkers, problem solvers, creators, and dreamers. Teachers also possess the ability to help students turn their dreams into a robust reality, to inspire and equip young learners for the hard work of overcoming the many barriers they will confront in life. In short, teachers are the real game changers, if one criteria is met. Read more