Student Support Services Director
Degrees and Certifications:
Mrs. Christy Jackson
Mrs. Jackson is a district Special Education Coordinator; she is also the school Psychometrist and RTI/MTSS coordinator for Fort Payne City Schools.
Mrs. Jackson is a graduate of Fort Payne High School. She graduated with a Bachelors degree in Special Education from Jacksonville State University where she also earned her Masters degree in Special Education. She holds a Masters and an Educational Specialist degree in Administration from the University of Alabama. Mrs. Jackson completed her certification in Psychometry from Alabama A & M
Alabama’s Multi-Tiered System of Supports and RTI:
In 2021, Fort Payne City Schools joined a pilot with the State Department of Education to begin a comprehensive overhaul of the traditional RTI model to transform the role of the state and district support to a comprehensive Alabama Multi-Tiered System of Supports (AL-MTSS) model that is all inclusive to serve the “whole” child.
AL-MTSS will encompass the current RTI framework and expand academic and behavioral supports into a more comprehensive system of supports, as well as provide a repository of state programs and initiatives that can be used, measures of impact or effectiveness, and the alignment of other national evidence-based practices (please refer to Section IV of the Alabama Literacy Act Implementation Guide). The AL-MTSS is a comprehensive framework that encompasses the academic, behavioral, physical, mental health and wellness, and social-emotional needs to support the whole child. The AL-MTSS uses a proactive, team-driven approach that involves stakeholders: state, regional, district, school, higher education, community, family, and student to ensure equitable access to opportunities that will improve outcomes for every student.
The mission of an RTI framework within an MTSS model is to ensure all students’ academic needs are met. While the Alabama Literacy Act provides an important opportunity to address the core reading instruction and intervention needs of ALL students with reading deficiencies, some students with reading deficiencies may ultimately be found to meet the eligibility requirements for special education and have a disability and a need for special education services pursuant to the Alabama Administrative Code (AAC).
Response to Intervention (RtI)/Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) integrates assessment and intervention within a multi-level prevention system to maximize student achievement and to reduce behavioral problems. With RtI, schools use data to identify students at risk for poor learning outcomes, monitor student progress, provide evidence-based interventions and adjust the intensity and nature of those interventions depending on a student’s responsiveness. A three-tiered model of intervention within the general education curriculum is applied, which includes academic as well as behavioral interventions. The core principles of RtI applied within the tiered framework of intervention are 1. Universal screening, 2. Intervention, 3. Progress monitoring, 4. Intervention efficacy and fidelity.
Problem Solving Team PST
The Problem Solving Team (PST) is a team of school professionals who meet on a regular basis to address teacher’s concerns about struggling students and to help design intervention plans. The purpose of the team is to be an effective problem-solving group that: assesses teachers’ concern about student academic and/or behavioral difficulties, identifies student strengths, interests and talents, reviews baseline data that has been collected, sets projected outcomes and methods for measuring progress, designs specific intervention plans, reviews and monitors intervention plans, and develops a plan to communicate plan/results with students’ parents. The PST is not to be used as a referral system for special education. If a student does not make adequate progress in tier I, more targeted instruction is provided and monitored for 8-10 weeks. For students who do not adequately respond to the targeted tier II intervention, they receive tier III intensive intervention targeted to their deficits for 8-10 weeks. A referral can be made for special education when interventions from tier II and III have been deemed unsuccessful; all data used to make determinations must be submitted with the referral.
If you have any questions regarding RtI/MTSS or the PST, please contact the counselor at your child’s school or Christy Jackson, RtI/MTSS Coordinator at Fort Payne City Board of Education (256-845-0915) for further information and parent training.