Schools in District 31 have both a Teacher Assistance Team (TAT) and a Child Study Team (CST).  The purpose of a TAT is a system for supporting classroom teacher on a day-to-day basis within a building.  It also serves as a “within building” peer problem-solving group.  It is based on the belief that teachers have the skills and knowledge to effectively teach many students with learning and behavioral problems by working in a collective problem-solving environment.  The Teacher Assistance Team consists of General Education Teachers and Administration.  Special Education Staff is optional.

If a child is experiencing difficulty in school, the TAT assist the General Education teacher in beginning prereferral interventions, which are required by Minnesota Rule.  Before a student is referred for a Special Education assessment, the district must conduct at least 2 instructional strategies, alternatives or interventions while the pupil is in the regular classroom.  The pupil’s teacher must provide the documentation…MS 125A.56.  Prereferral interventions are planned, systematic efforts by regular education staff to resolve apparent learning or behavior problems…MR 3525.220.  Prereferral interventions run 30 school days.

If prereferral interventions are not successful, the TAT may refer the student to the Child Study Team (CST) for possible Special Education evaluation.  The CST reviews the prereferral intervention and student information before deciding whether or not to recommend evaluation.  If they recommend an educational evaluation, parents are asked to come into school to assist in planning the evaluation.  Once permission for evaluation is received, the school has 30 school days to complete the evaluation and determine eligibility for services.  If the student is eligible for Special Education services, an Individual Education Plan is developed by the IEP team (parents, general education teacher, special education teacher and school administrator).  If the student is not eligible, the evaluation team can use the information gathered to assist the general education teacher in teaching to the student’s strengths or can consider a 504 plan, if appropriate.