Tennessee Behavior Supports Project
September 2017
Poplar Grove Middle School
Kenrose Elementary

huge shout out to Poplar Grove Middle School in Franklin Special School District! They are in their second year of implementing RTI2-B, and the RTI2-B team has made including all stakeholders a priority. Each year they focus on gaining staff-buy in, and they are doing great things at their school.  At the beginning of the year, they provide a training for all teachers and support staff so everyone fully understands the Tier I plan. They have also seen sizable improvements in teacher participation in the plan due to their staff incentives and weekly reminders. This helps everyone feel informed, organized, and prepared for the week. Examples of staff incentives include raffles for Sonic and Starbucks drinks, items from the Treat Trolley, jeans day passes, gift cards, and t-shirts. At the end of the year they hold a special drawing for the opportunity to attend the Ron Clark Academy. What a great opportunity! Transparency and feedback have also been critical to gaining staff buy-in. The team shares their school-wide behavior data with staff on a monthly basis so that everyone knows what is happening in the building. They have also increased opportunities for staff feedback throughout the year by asking staff to complete surveys. The team then uses the results of those surveys to make adjustments to their plan and their communication system. Having grade level representation on the Tier I team is also beneficial because all teachers have someone who can bring their concerns to the meetings and someone to provide clarification as questions arise. Poplar Grove Middle School has done a wonderful job supporting their students, families, and staff while continuing to provide opportunities for their voices to be heard. Well done!

Gaining Staff Buy-In
Staff buy-in is an essential component to the success of RTI2-B in the school setting. Staff buy-in can be an important key to a school’s successful implementation of RTI2-B, while a lack of buy-in can be one of the biggest barriers to success. Therefore, it is extremely important for schools to plan for how to obtain staff buy-in and to keep staff informed and involved in the RTI2-B implementation process. Here are a few tips to gaining staff buy-in at your school:
  • Gain an understanding of your staff’s perspectives about RTI2-B, school culture/climate, teaching appropriate behavior, etc. Staff members should be able to provide input prior to implementing RTI2-B, as well as throughout the implementation process. This can be done through things such as suggestion boxes, short polls or surveys, etc. PLCs and staff meetings are also beneficial meetings during which you can ask for feedback.
  • Share data with school staff on a regular basis. Sharing data helps staff understand the rationale for implementing RTI2-B. Be sure to point out strengths, as well as areas for improvement when looking at the data.
  • Have different staff members share testimonials about what they see as working well in the school with RTI2-B. We also have testimonial videos on the TBSP website that may be beneficial, including one titled “Encourage Staff Buy-In.” These can be found by clicking on the “Videos” page on the TBSP website http://tennesseebsp.org/.
  • For tips and tricks about staff buy-in from schools that are currently implementing RTI2-B, visit the TBSP website http://tennesseebsp.org/, and go to the Events: Summit page. You can view the Elementary and Secondary Ignite Sessions to hear from school team members about obtaining staff buy-in. You can also view our webinar for district coaches, titled “Helping Schools With Staff Buy-In.”
Have Questions? Need Resources?
If you have a success story to share about what is going well with RTI2-B in your school, check out the Success Stories page on the TBSP website. We would love to hear about it! We have added additional resources and videos to our website. To access these materials, visit the TBSP website http://tennesseebsp.org/ and click on “Resources.”
What’s Happening?

The fall Universal Behavior Screener window for participating schools is September 18th-29th. The fall Tiered Fidelity Inventory window for participating schools is October 16th-27th. For more information about the SRSS-IE and the TFI, visit the TBSP website http://tennesseebsp.org/ and click on “Resources – Webinars – Data.”
The Tennessee Behavior Supports Project is supported by a Technical Assistance Grant within the Department of Special Education at Vanderbilt University
funded by the Tennessee Department of Education (Grant # 4-26-230-2023)

Tennessee Behavior Supports Project at Vanderbilt University
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Nashville, TN 37203
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