Staff at East Loddon P–12 College explain why they implemented MTSS, what the different tiers of intervention look like and what impact they have seen. East Loddon P–12 College is a government school located north of Bendigo, between multiple small towns. It has less than 300 students from Prep to Year 12.
Watch MTSS at East Loddon P–12 (VIC) on YouTube.

Duration: 3:20


Steven Leed, Principal: East Lodden P–12 College is located in country Victoria, literally in the middle of a shire, in the middle of cow paddocks. We don't have a township at all, itself, but we have some smaller towns within our catchment area. We cover an actual area geographically that's larger than the city of Greater Melbourne. We have 282 students enrolled, and every single one of our 282 kids is bussed into the school. It's quite different to your metropolitan school, to your regional locations, as well. We're very rural and quite proud of that as well.

Sally Fleming, Literacy Leader and Head of English: At the end of 2021, we found 60% of our Year 7s were at some or increased risk, 70% of our Year 8s and 50% of our Year 9s. And we're pretty shocked by that. And it helped us to question our own practices. We didn't look at the kids and think, 'Oh, that's because they're not capable of reading.' We just thought, 'We need to change what we're doing. We need to change how we're thinking about our T1.' And eventually, we thought, 'We really need T2.' And getting more confident in your T1 and really understanding those literacy skills helped us to be more reflective of our practice, and also more confident for advocating for the students and what they need and the additional tiers to support their learning.

Kathryn McDiven, Literacy Intervention Teacher: Initially, we just began with Tier 2 because we needed to try and group together as many students as we could. The concern about Tier 3 for us is that we're a small team and if we take on a few students at Tier 3, then that's at the expense of a larger number at Tier 2. But over time, we've just sort of discovered some students who really need the benefit of a Tier 3 and so we timetable – for a few students – that Tier 3 intervention.

Kate Hardinge, Literacy Intervention Teacher: Using the reading tutor program, we attack really specific problems that they're having with the code. We will work on spelling and lots of repetition because, obviously, that is a huge need for these kids. They will work intensely on exactly what it is that they need to develop their reading skills and their spelling skills.

Steven Leed: We developed a partnership with La Trobe University in Bendigo, and spoke to some other schools that were going down this path as well. And after we identified that need for change, we've wholeheartedly jumped into this program and really seen the benefits, I suppose, because of that collective efficacy around this. So, we wanted our literacy results to improve, knowing full well that if they can improve, we think we can improve the academic outcomes of all other subjects and learning areas as well across the school.

Kathryn McDiven: What we're really seeing the difference in is in student engagement. We have some students who have really increased their attendance because they've had a boost in confidence from being involved in our programs. We're starting to see students move up out of the extreme risk in their testing, and we're seeing students saying that they're using the strategies that we're teaching in a range of subjects like their English and their maths. And we're seeing the maths teachers even coming to say, 'This student’s become a lot stronger,' and we think it's to do with their literacy intervention.

Keywords: multi-tiered systems of support