Tier 3

A smaller group of students, approximately 1-5%, will be provided with ongoing Tier 1 support, will probably have been included in a Tier 2 support, and will still be experiencing difficulty. In many cases these students have school histories significant for academic and behavioral difficulties over an extended period of time. Because their needs may be both more significant and more chronic, the types of support systems employed will be individualized and specific. Just as with the Tier 2 level, schools must build on the established schoolwide system to accurately identify these students, and data-based decision making is essential.

Students with these types of behavior problems require specially designed and individualized interventions that match the needs, or function, of the behaviors. This is where functional behavioral assessment (FBA) and behavior plans can be utilized. Expertise in the science of behavioral assessment is necessary for the development and implementation of individualized support plans. The school’s tertiary system must include: (a) personnel who are trained in the basic principles of behavior, functional assessment, and behavior support planning, (b) a system for early identification and referral, and (c) an organizational structure that allows for flexible teaming and planning. The process can be initiated through a teacher’s, family member’s or student’s request for assistance or through systematic tracking of data to monitor students, or other means defined by the school/district.

The school teams which are formed to design and implement individual student plans should include those adults who are typically involved with the student on a daily basis along with other staff who have more specialized skills (i.e. school counselors, social workers, special education staff, school psychologists, administrators, and school nurses). The team also includes the family members and if appropriate the student. If the team is to be successful, they must be given the time to meet on a regular basis.