EPSD Instructional Specialists



Alburtis Elementary School - Courtney Ridley (cridley@eastpennsd.org)

Jefferson Elementary School - Rosalie Gallagher (rgallagher@eastpennsd.org)

Lincoln Elementary School -Alexa Bernd (abernd@eastpennsd.org)

Macungie Elementary School - Chanin Deegan (cdeegan@eastpennsd.org)

Shoemaker Elementary School - Julie Konjoian (jkonjoian@eastpennsd.org)

Wescosville Elementary School - Dennine Leschinsky (dleschinsky@eastpennsd.or)

Willow Lane Elementary School - Jennifer Sakelarides (jsakelarides@eastpennsd.org)


What is an Instructional Specialist/IST?

How has the IST role changed?

We help to coordinate tier 2 and tier 3 interventions for our struggling students, we help to facilitate PD at our district and in our building and the most important change is working on tier 1 instructional practices during core instruction through coaching in order to improve student achievement. We need a solid tier 1 before we can consider students for tier 2 or tier 3 academic or behavior interventions. If tier 2 and tier 3 interventions paired with instructional or behavioral strategies and supports are not effective, we will look at data as a DAT or SWPBS team and discuss options for students. Once all options have been tried, the team may decide to move forward with the MDE (Multi-Disciplinary Evaluation). This is the case when the team feels a replacement curriculum may be warranted. The Instructional Specialist still facilitates this conversation with teams including parents and then completes the achievement portion of the testing which includes weekly progress monitoring and monthly strategic monitoring data. On the other side of the spectrum, we test students to see if they are eligible for gifted support.

IST Team Helpful Information:

Teachers meet twice a year in DAT meetings after a Universal Screening in the fall and in the winter. The team analyzes the data and places students in the appropriate intervention to meet their greatest area of need. This may be a remedial skill or an enrichment skill. WIN (What I Need) groups are developed and teachers track data to see growth and to determine if the intervention is effective. If the interventions are not effective the Instructional Support Team may request a meeting with a parent.

The Instructional Support Team is comprised of the teacher, parent, Instructional Specialist, Guidance Counselor, Principal, School Psychologist or other related school personnel. The team meets to determine best strategies to help a child. They brainstorms ideas together and puts interventions in place based on the needs of the student. The team collects data over time to see if the strategies and interventions are effective. If interventions are not effective, they discuss other options and assessments to determine if other supports and a possible replacement curriculum are warranted.