Department of Student Services
As part of it’s Portrait of a Graduate initiative, the Oxford School District Office of Equity and Intervention was established in 2019 with the mission of ensuring that students experience an education in grades pre-K-12 that is both ethical and culturally aware. In addition, the district developed targeted support systems to identify students with academic or behavioral needs.
Educational equity is a measure of achievement, fairness, and opportunity in education. However, inequity in education is challenging to avoid, and can be broken down into inequity due to socioeconomic standing, race, gender or disability.
Equity in education is a goal that everyone in education can rally behind. What educator doesn’t want to see all students have an equal opportunity for success? But it’s not always easy to define precisely what is meant when educators talk about equity. Is it about outcomes? Resources? Funding? Academic support? Family support? Achieving true equity requires addressing all of these aspects and more, from both a larger systems perspective and an individual student perspective.
While not restricted to any particular disparities, the foundation of the work of the office lies in addressing inequities due to the disparities found in various data sets. Beyond racial equity, the office also addresses disparities related to gender, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, disability, etc.
Some students struggle with academics. Others struggle with behavioral challenges. Still others struggle with both. Instead of “waiting for failure”, the Oxford School District takes a proactive approach to identifying students who need additional support. Early assessment and intervention for these students can help them catch up with their peers sooner.
The Office of Equity and Intervention uses the Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) framework to provide targeted support for struggling students. MTSS grew out of the integration of two other intervention-based frameworks: Response to Intervention (RtI) and PBIS.
As part of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) updated by Congress in 2004, the Response to Intervention model of assessment originally sought to identify students who would benefit from more intensive support. From these beginnings as a tool to help improve educational outcomes for students in special education, MTSS has grown to encompass all students at every level. The integrated instruction model of MTSS uses collected data to assess student needs and provide them with interventions in appropriate tiers.
The key components of MTSS include:
- Universal screening of all students early in the school year
- Tiers of interventions that can be amplified in response to levels of need
- Ongoing data collection and continual assessment
- Schoolwide approach to expectations and supports
- Parent involvement
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (as amended)
This civil rights legislation prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in schools and other entities receiving Federal monetary assistance. In compliance with this legislation, the Oxford School District does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities.