First Response

A Guide to Designing and Delivering Classroom Interventions

A U.S. Department of Education Resource

First Response was created to help school leaders, teachers, paraprofessionals, and support specialists reflect on and improve academic interventions in the classroom. In many cases, schools use what could be termed “hit or miss” interventions—that is, interventions are not informed by student data, applied consistently, or integrated with curricula and instruction. Unfortunately, hit-or-miss interventions allow students to slip through the cracks, and those who begin a course performing below grade level or well behind their peers are at risk of never catching up. This guide describes an alternative—and more equitable—approach: a collaborative professional culture that anticipates, prepares for, and responds to individual learning needs, that accelerates knowledge and skill acquisition, and that remains unwaveringly focused on ensuring college and career readiness for all students. The guide includes:

  • A glossary of critical intervention terms.
  • Brief profiles of effective intervention programs and practices from four high schools.
  • Three self-assessment rubrics that will help schools engage in small- and large-group discussions about classroom-based interventions.
  • A selection of protocols that school leaders and facilitators can use to structure conversations and work sessions.
  • A selection of best practices and recommendations for both teachers and school leaders.
  • Planning templates that schools can use to map out assets, challenges, and action-plan priorities related to classroom-based interventions.
  • A selection of useful resources, readings, and research.

Download First Response: A Guide to Designing and Delivering Classroom Interventions →

First Response is a free, public resource produced under U.S. Department of Education Contract No. ED-ESE-11-C-0053.  

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