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Transformation Zones Named to Help Implement Strategies for Top 10 in 10 Initiatives

May 10, 2017

LANSING – The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) has signed Memoranda of Understanding with three intermediate school districts (ISDs) to work collaboratively around selected initiatives from the Top 10 in 10 Strategic Plan, the department announced today.

Lenawee ISD, Saginaw ISD, and Ingham ISD, along with partners from the State Implementation and Scaling Up of Evidence Based Practices (SISEP) Center, join MDE in developing infrastructure and capacity around our use of effective learner centered supports – one of the four identified Focus Areas driving the work to help make Michigan a Top 10 education state in 10 years.

“We welcome the three ISDs in their various roles, and look forward to building our collective capacity in scaling practices that lead Michigan ever closer to the goal of becoming a Top 10 education state in 10 years,” said State Superintendent Brian Whiston.

The initial focus is on implementing Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) as an evidence-based practice, identified and defined by MDE and education stakeholders.

MTSS is a comprehensive framework that uses a collection of research-based strategies designed to meet the needs of the whole child (academic, behavioral, physical, social, and emotional). MTSS intentionally interconnects all education systems and subsystems in support of successful learner, school, and community outcomes.

MDE will work with these ISDs to install MTSS within a variety of education settings across the state, called Transformation Zones.

A Transformation Zone approach is designed to improve instructional and innovation practices, and provide a purposeful approach to developing sustainable and replicable infrastructure. With an eye on sustainability, school leaders will be able to develop systems that work most effectively in various school settings, and provide insights for future implementation statewide.

“By starting small and improving practices as we go, the goal is to build a coherent statewide system that deliberately and consistently implements effective learner-centered supports to improve student outcomes,” Whiston said.

Lenawee and Saginaw ISDs will serve as full partners in taking MTSS to selected districts utilizing an approach grounded in the principles of implementation science. Ingham ISD will participate as a thought partner, providing feedback on MDE-developed guidance related to MTSS including evaluating, validating or shaping existing concepts.