May 2016, Issue 32
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As the school year winds down, SWIFT partner schools have much to celebrate!

The Alburgh School in Vermont celebrates an increase from 28% to 72% in their SWIFT-FIT (Fidelity Implementation Tool) measure for Inclusive Behavior Instruction. They accomplished this progress through a focus on Universal Practices and data-based decision making and monitoring for all three tiers of support. In North Heroof Grand Isle Supervisory Union—talent shows include All! Watch this 3 1/2-minute performance on YouTube and smile!

SWIFT partner middle schools in New Hampshire are committed to including ALL students. Visit the Charlestown Middle School website to see their creative presentation about All Means All. At Great Brook Middle School—the New England Spotlight School award winner—Principal Jim Elder explained, “The teachers know and care about everyone in their classroom, and desire that all students make good academic progress.” The purpose of The Spotlight School Award recognizes schools that have a record of effective teaching and learning for young adolescents and consistently implement middle level best practices.

In Maryland, West Side Elementary School’s grade 3 Chinese Partial Immersion students won first place in the Confucius Institute Chinese Bridge Competition at the University of Maryland. Teams give a 3-minute speech and a cultural performance. The K-6 competition includes schools from Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC.

Pendleton School District in Oregon continues to collaborate with the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR) to create strong systems capitalizing on the unique cultural traditions of native students ultimately resulting in high academic outcomes for all students. Significant accomplishments include the revision of a Memorandum of Understanding originally adopted in 1999 and the creation of a Heritage Language program in which all kindergarten students learn the native Umatilla language. You can learn more about these collaborations HERE.

We haven't overlooked Mississippi—rather, we are sharing a lot of good news about them in the State Spotlight section below.



Have you registered for the SWIFT Professional Learning Institute "Better Together" - July 21-22, 2016?

Join SWIFT partner school teams and our national community at the 2016 SWIFT National Professional Learning Institute (PLI). Expect to be inspired by presentations given by educators and administrators from SWIFT partner states, districts, and schools — panel discussions around hot topics in inclusive education and school reform — inspiring speakers and films — working sessions with like-minded colleagues — and more. Browse our dynamic list of speakers and sessions HERE.

If you live in a SWIFT partner state, contact your SEA or LEA Facilitator to access a free registration link. If you are from anywhere else in the world, click here to register for the conference for only $250. Be sure to use this hotel link to reserve a room in the SWIFT block at a significantly discounted rate. Not sure where you fit in? Contact

MTSS and Special Education Services

During a recent webinar on the the topic of Special Education and Multi-tiered System of Support (MTSS), a parent asked the question "Will my child lose special education services if MTSS is implemented within an inclusive framework?" The presenters pointed out that a continuum of services and supports—including Special Education—can be provided within one system. This discussion served as a great reminder for the need to include family members as participants in key school decisions and to inform families about MTSS and Inclusive Education. You can find some resources on these topics on our "Family & Community" page.

Catch Up with SWIFT

Southeast Conference on Positive Behavior Interventions and Support:
Savannah, GA, June 5-7, 2016

2016 National PBIS Leadership Forum:
Rosemont, IL, October 27-28, 2016.


Scaling Up in Mississippi

Recently, the Mississippi Department of Education formed the Office of Intervention Services (OIS). This office is responsible for successfully implementing and sustaining Multi-Tiered System of Supports to accelerate and maximize student academic and social emotional outcomes through the application of collaborative, data-based problem solving utilized by effective leadership at all levels of the educational system. In addition, the Office offers guidance on appropriate intervention data collection, data-based decision making, evaluation, and progress monitoring for students in need of supplementary, intensive academic and behavioral supports in order to ensure all students who graduate high school are college or career ready.

Recently, OIS held a Response to Intervention (RTI) Task force meeting to review and revise the existing RTI process to be coherent with the concept of a multi-tiered system of support. Robin Lemonis, the Director of OIS, told the group that RTI is a piece of MTSS. She explained the basis for using the term MTSS and how we should be thinking about how to serve ALL students—not just having a focus on those students who need additional support. She shared with the group—which included representatives from districts across the state—how SWIFT aligned perfectly with Mississippi’s vision of MTSS and the great resources that SWIFT provides to implement and sustain MTSS.

To scale up MTSS in Mississippi, OIS employed four individuals specializing in the areas of gifted, English Learners, special education, and elementary education. The Office hosted regional training events on MTSS for district teams. The training provided an overview of MTSS and guidance on the elements needed to build the necessary infrastructure at the district level to establish and sustain systematic supports for all students. The Office also provided to high school counselors training on behavioral supports within MTSS. Finally, OIS published such resources as the MTSS Quick Reference Guide and the MTSS Flowchart for Pre-K-12 to support districts and schools.


Are you downloading SWIFT Unscripted podcasts from iTunes? This month's podcast features Barb Trader, as she talks about the past, present, and future of All Means All and the policies designed to support equity-based inclusive education.

Executive Director of TASH, Barb Trader, introduces a recent SWIFT Center Issue Brief on the topic of contributing to positive student engagement and outcomes through fostering the alignment of educational policies and practice. Her post and a link to “Indicators of Effective Policy Development & Implementation” can be found here. Thank you Barb for your ongoing commitment and contributions to All Means All!

Effective communication between home and school are important for ensuring learners feel truly included and valued. Luis Perez—author of "Mobile Learning for All," an Apple Distinguished Educator, Google in Education Certified Innovator, and the Professional Learning Chair of the Inclusive Learning Network of the International Society for Technology in Education—contributed SWIFT's recent blog post in our SWIFT Talk Universal Design for Learning (UDL) series. Read it here and further your school's ability to connect with families through UDL!
Spreading research, resources, and stories of equity-based inclusive education is an important aspect of our work. Because we recognize that engaging adult learners can sometimes be a challenging task, SWIFT Center’s latest webinar is about Creating Meaningful Presentations to Promote All Means All. Whether you are presenting to your school board, faculty, parent teacher organization, a national conference audience (like the upcoming SWIFT National PLI), or your family and friends, this webinar will give you the tools to engage your audience and promote schoolwide transformation. Check it out here!


SWIFT offers free monthly webinars via Adobe Connect on topics related to the domains and features of schoolwide integrated framework for transformation. Recordings of all webinars can be downloaded in the Multi Media section of SWIFT Shelf.
The SWIFT Center produced this document under U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs Grant No. H326Y120005. OSEP Project Officers Grace Zamora Durán and Tina Diamond served as the project officers. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the positions or policies of the Department of Education. No official endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any product, commodity, service or enterprise mentioned in this publication is intended or should be inferred. This product is public domain. Authorization to reproduce it in whole or in part is granted. While permission to reprint this publication is not necessary, the citation should be: SWIFT Center. (2016). SWIFT News, Issue 32, May 2016. Lawrence, KS: SWIFT Center.

SWIFT Center
1315 Wakarusa Drive,
Lawrence, KS 66049

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