Program Persistence: Instructional Support Teams in Pennsylvania

Open Access
Hughes, Teresa Kay Shehan
Graduate Program:
Educational Leadership
Doctor of Education
Document Type:
Date of Defense:
May 12, 2010
Committee Members:
  • Dr William T, Hartman, Dissertation Advisor
  • William Hartman, Committee Chair
  • Susan C Faircloth, Committee Member
  • David Lee, Committee Member
  • John W Tippeconnic, Iii, Committee Member
  • prereferral intervention
  • Instructional Support Teams
  • program persistence
The Instructional Support Team in Pennsylvania was implemented during the early part of the 1990s in response to a call for schools to address the increasingly high costs of special education services while assuring that struggling students received the types of services that would address their individual needs. The Instructional Support Team was used by all Pennsylvania school districts until the mandate requiring its use was removed some years later in 1997. Although the use of the Instructional Support Team was no longer mandated, schools remained responsible for assisting students in need and reducing the costs of Special Education services. Some schools chose to continue the use of the Instructional Support Team, and continue to do so today. The rationale of this exploratory study was to identify the characteristics of an educational program which explain its continued use over time using the experiences of school personnel across the commonwealth who are/were responsible for the implementation of the Instructional Support Team.