IST - The Instructional Support Process

“A Collaborative, Systematic Approach to Student Success”

What is Instructional Support?

Instructional Support is a systematic intervention planning process for students who are at risk of school failure due to learning, behavioral, and/or social difficulties. The primary goal is to identify a student’s instructional needs and to provide specific support necessary for school success.

What is the Instructional Support Team (IST) Process?

The IST process involves four steps:
  • Identifying the student’s need for academic, behavioral, and/or social support
  • Determining the strategies needed to assist the student
  • Implementing intervention strategies through a continuum of services
  • Providing support for teachers and staff to assist them in implementing the interventions
Who are the members of the Instructional Support Team?

The team may include the following: parents, the teacher requesting assistance, teacher representatives from primary and intermediate grades, the principal, the instructional support teacher, the school counselor, the reading specialist, and other support personnel as needed.

What is the procedure for making the request for assistance?

Any staff member may request assistance by completing the appropriate referral form. In addition, parents may request assistance by contacting their child’s classroom teacher, the principal, or the instructional support teacher.

What happens next?

The instructional support teacher begins to collect data regarding the student’s academic, behavioral, and/or social needs. Data collection includes interviews with teachers and parents, curriculum-based assessments, and classroom observations. Once the data collection is completed, parents are invited to attend the IST intervention meeting for their child.

What happens at the meeting?

The data is summarized.
The student’s needs are identified.
The goals are established.
The team, including the parents, brainstorm ways to help the child meet the goals.
The ideas are clarified.
The classroom teacher selects interventions that he/she feels would work in his/her classroom. Parents also have the opportunity to choose interventions that could be done at home.
A plan to implement these interventions is designed.


Each child’s progress will be monitored for up to thirty school days through measurable, observable means. A follow-up meeting will be scheduled to review progress.