The Instructional Support Team (IST) in the Mt. Lebanon School District is an innovative program that was developed to help maximize individual student success in the regular elementary classroom. Each Instructional Support Team always includes the principal, classroom teacher, parents, and the instructional support teacher, who facilitates the process. IST is a positive, success-oriented program which uses research-based assessments and intervention techniques to help students achieve their potential in the school setting.
One main question always discussed by the team is, “What resources can we use to increase the success of a student in the regular classroom?” IST answers this most important question through a team approach that provides for greater cohesiveness, coordination, and instructional continuity while complementing the existing school curriculum and instructional programs at our school.
Students are identified for IST services by the classroom teacher, parents, or the school principal. The school psychologist, guidance counselor, speech pathologist, and other staff members may also serve on the team.
The IST process is based on team work. During the meetings, the team determines which strategies need to be implemented to help the student achieve success in the regular classroom setting. Collaboration and joint planning occur throughout the entire decision-making period. Each member of the team has equal input in helping to determine what methods, learning strategies, or special techniques best address the student’s needs.
The Instructional Support Team process involves a three step approach. First, it identifies a student’s need for academic or behavioral support. Next, it determines the strategies needed to assist the student. Finally, the team implements the intervention strategies through a continuum of services. Additional interventions may be added to help the student continue to maintain a proper level of success in the classroom.
In addition to coordinating the process, the IST teacher is responsible for the mathematics intervention if applicable. Participation in the mathematics intervention program is determined through the analysis of multiple data sources.
2012-2013 Instructional Support Teachers
Foster Elementary School
Ms. Sharon Phillips
Ms. Mary Perz
Ms. Margie DiGiorno
Ms. Kim Salvador
Ms. Marilyn Reinhard
Ms. Gretchen Warmbein
Ms. Kelly Barsotti