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Early Multi-tiered System of Supports

The Agency of Education is a recipient of a State Professional Development Grant (SPDG) and Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Grant (RTT ELC).  Both federal grants support expansion, scale-up and sustainability of the Foundations for Early Learning (FEL) professional development initiative that began in 2008.  FEL is now referred to as Early Multi-tiered Systems of Support or ‘Early MTSS’.

Over the next five years, Early MTSS will continue to offer professional development to regional cohort leaders and early childhood practitioners based on the pyramid model, a tiered framework of evidence-based practices (EBP) developed by two national, federally funded research and training centers: the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) and the Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Intervention (TACSEI). This tiered framework of universal promotion, prevention and intervention is the model for delivering a comprehensive range of evidence-based practices, strategies and resources to families and early childhood practitioners with the goal of improving early learning, social and emotional well-being and competence for Vermont’s young children birth thru age 8.  Early MTSS also aligns the extensive research, materials and practices developed by the Center for Early Literacy Learning to support early learning.

The VT Early MTSS System Inventory

The Vermont Early MTSS System Inventory is to be used by Early Education programs and their Leadership Team to:

  • Assess readiness, and identify strengths and gaps, to promote program wide adoption of key components of Early MTSS and the stages of implementation.
  • Develop and implementation and action plan so that Early MTSS components and evidence-based practices are implemented to fidelity and are sustainable over time.
  • Benefit and promote positive outcomes for each and every child and their families.

The Early MTSS System Inventory is grounded in the science of implementation, which bridges the gap between evidence-based practice (EBP) and high-fidelity implementation of that practice.  Activities related to sustainability are embedded throughout the System Inventory to ensure the implementation of evidence-based practices at the classroom level and program-wide level.

The Preliminary Pyramid Assessment

As a tool used within an Early Multi-Tiered System of Supports (Early MTSS) framework, the Preliminary Pyramid Assessment (PPA) was developed to guide teams in thoughtful and systematic decision-making process prior to referring a child who demonstrates challenging behaviors to referral sources such as school district Early Childhood Special Education, behavioral interventionist, Children’s Integrated Services/Early Intervention, and/or Early Childhood Mental Health, etc. The PPA will also help teams consider when it is appropriate to apply for specialized support through the Child Development Division’s Special Accommodations Grant.

Action Planning Tool

The Action Planning Tool is an Early MTSS continuous improvement and planning tool, that prompts Leadership Teams to examine their systemic priorities through the lens of the Implementation Drivers. This tool is used after Leadership Teams complete the System Inventory, which helps to identify systemic strengths and gaps, and determine systemic priorities.