Training Provider Opportunity: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support for Reading

The American Institutes for Research (AIR), in collaboration with Instructional Research Group (IRG), announces a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking qualified entities to provide training and support to elementary schools on the implementation of multi-tiered systems of support in reading (MTSS-R). The selected training provider will collaborate with AIR and IRG in a large-scale, randomized study of MTSS-R in Grades 1 and 2 for the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education.

A webinar was held for interested bidders, on Sep 13, 2019.

View the webinar recording >>

Read responses to questions from the webinar >>

The goal of the study is to implement a comprehensive MTSS-R model with fidelity and evaluate its impact on students’ reading achievement. Studies have demonstrated promise for individual components of MTSS-R, such as the use of supplemental supports. But there is little rigorous evidence on the effectiveness of a comprehensive MTSS-R model.

The MTSS-R model that will be evaluated includes four core components (see Exhibit 1):

  1. Tier I Instruction. Tier I refers to systematic core reading instruction using evidence-based practices, including differentiated and explicit instruction for all students.  
  2. Tier II Intervention. Tier II is the provision of supplemental evidence-based program(s) focused on foundational reading skills and using high-leverage instructional practices (e.g., modeling, multiple opportunities to respond, feedback) for students identified as at-risk of reading difficulty.
  3. Screening and Progress Monitoring. The MTSS-R model includes regular use of validated assessment tools to screen all students for reading difficulty and monitor the progress of students identified as being at-risk to guide student placement in Tier II intervention.
  4. Infrastructure. The infrastructure includes a school-based team that meets regularly to lead and coordinate MTSS-R implementation and a district-based MTSS-R coach who supports school staff to implement MTSS-R with fidelity.

Exhibit 1. Proposed Model for Multi-Tiered Systems of Support in Reading

Graphic: Exhibit 1, Proposed Model for Multi-Tiered Systems of Support in Reading

The offeror must be able to provide training and support for implementation of all four core components to approximately 50 schools in 10 districts throughout the United States for 2 years. Support must include readiness activities in spring 2020, initial content trainings in summer 2020, booster trainings in summer 2021, and implementation supports across school years 2020–21 and 2021–22.

Proposals will be evaluated based on

  • the soundness of the proposed MTSS-R training program for each of the four MTSS-R model components and evidence of the training program’s effectiveness;
  • the quality and intensity of the proposed training and support activities;
  • staff experience in delivering equivalent MTSS-R training and support; and
  • the providers’ capacity to deliver training on the needed scale.

Additionally, the provider must demonstrate its ability to train school personnel on commonly used screening and progress monitoring systems (schools will not be expected to change their data systems if they include screening and progress monitoring measures that are psychometrically valid) and propose evidence-based Tier II program(s) on which they are qualified to provide training. Given the comprehensive nature of the MTSS-R model and scale of the study, we expect that it may be necessary for qualified organizations to form partnerships and submit one unified proposal.

Links to the RFP and 5 supplementary forms are below. Questions are due August 15. Proposals are due October 31. Direct questions, proposal submissions and any other inquiries to:

Dr. Anja Kurki
Project Director, MTSS-R
American Institutes for Research
6003 Executive Boulevard
Suite 300
Rockville, MD 20852
Telephone: 202-403-5153

Managing Researcher