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icon of glasses and a book Research Networks Focused on Critical Problems of Policy and Practice in Special Education: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support

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Dr. Amy Sussman
(202) 245-7424


For FY 2018, the National Center for Special Education launched a new competition, the Research Networks Focused on Critical Problems of Policy and Practice in Special Education (Networks) program. This new program aims to focus resources and attention on high-priority issues in special education and to create both a structure and process for researchers who are working on these issues to share ideas, build new knowledge, and strengthen their research and dissemination capacity. The long-term outcomes of this program are to advance the field’s understanding of an issue beyond what an individual research project or team is able to do on its own and to assist policymakers and practitioners in using this information to strengthen education policies and programs and improve student education outcomes for students with or at risk for disabilities.

The Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) Network is the focus for FY 2018. MTSS are frameworks that provide multiple levels of support through coordinated, evidence-based practices, strategies, and structures to meet the academic, social, emotional, and behavioral needs of all learners. For this topic, MTSS must occur at the elementary school level, integrate both academic and behavioral supports, and address the needs of children with or at risk for disabilities.


Supporting Early Learning from Preschool Through Early Elementary School Grades Network
Scalable Strategies to Support College Completion Network