Dawn Miller

Dawn Miller

Dawn Miller

Dr. Dawn Miller works at the University of Kansas as the Associate Director of Technical Assistance at the SWIFT Education Center. SWIFT is a national technical assistance center that focuses on state, region, district, and school transformation efforts supporting high-quality, equity-based, inclusive education utilizing a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) framework to promote positive outcomes for all students, including those with the most extensive needs. Prior to joining SWIFT, Dawn was the Innovative Projects Facilitator for Shawnee Mission Public Schools. In this role, Dr. Miller served as a district team member leading the planning, staff development, implementation, and evaluation for response to intervention efforts around academic and behavior supports. Prior to joining Shawnee Mission, Dr. Miller served as a project director for statewide implementation of the problem-solving process and developing the Kansas Multi-Tiered System of Support. As part of the statewide efforts, Dr. Miller was involved with a statewide committee which led state regulation changes regarding child find and eligibility and has helped to translate these changes into district procedural changes linked to the School Improvement Process. Dr. Miller has applied her skills to work as a special education teacher, a school psychologist, adjunct faculty member for administrative programs in Kansas, and district and building consultant/trainer. She has authored or co-authored published work regarding the problem-solving process, assessing written language, and family communication and involvement.


Investigator, The SWIFT (Schoolwide Integrated Framework for Transformation) Education Center,
Associate Director of Technical Assistance,
The SWIFT (Schoolwide Integrated Framework for Transformation) Education Center

Ph.D., School Psychology, University of Oregon, 1996
B.A., Psychology, University of Northern Colorado, 1989
B.A., Special Education , University of Northern Colorado, 1989

Contact Information

Research Interests

Systems-wide transformative change through an equity-based Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS)

Professional Service

2017-present National Advisor for the Midwest and Plains Equity Assistance Center.

2002- 2015 Planning committee member for the Midwest Innovation Conference on MTSS.

2000-present Board Secretary and founding member of Innovation in Education, LLC. This organization hosts the National Innovation Conference on Response-to-Intervention.

2010-2015 Blog writer for the RtI Action Network.

2014 Doctoral committee member at the University of Kansas – Department of Special Education.

2014 Doctoral mentor for Baker University.

2014 Book reviewer for Guilford Press.

2013 Chapter reviewer for Best Practices in School Psychology.

2013 Expert reviewer for the School-wide Evaluation Tool-Reading created by Michigan's Integrated Behavior and Learning Support Initiative.

2012 Contributor and expert reviewer for the RtI Action Network project.

2006 Invited contributor to the NASDSE Response-to-Intervention Blueprints. Dallas, Texas

2002 Selected as a USDE Reading First expert review panelist

2002 Certified Trainer for DIBELS through the Dynamic Measurement Group

2002 Certified Trainer for REWARDS

2000-2002 Advisory committee for the Kansas State Department of Education Family-School Partnerships training curriculum

2000-2002 Member of the Kansas Professional Development Leadership Academy offered through the National Association of State Directors of Special Education.

2000 Evaluator for Federal and State grants, Keys for Networking, Topeka, KS.

  1. Adjunct appointed faculty at the University of Kansas. Course taught on a noncategorical identification and service delivery model for special education.

1998 Invited expert witness at due process hearing, Keys for Networking


1992           Outstanding CEC Graduate Student of the Year Award

1988-89    Outstanding Future Educator Award

1986-89    U.N.C. Special Education Departmental Scholar Award


1997-current     Kansas School Psychologist Certification

1993-current     Kansas Special Education Teaching Certification

1989-current     Colorado EMH Teacher Certification Level K-12


Freeman, R., Newcomer, L., & Miller, D. (2016). District leadership and implementation strategies for integrating intensive and individualized academic and behavioral student interventions. In F.E. Obiakor, T. Banks, A. Rotatori, & C. Utley, (Eds), Leadership matters in the education of students with “special” needs (pp. 20-25). Information Age Publishers, Charlotte, North Carolina.


Miller, D. & Freeman, R. (2016). Challenges Faced by New Implementation sites: The Role of Culture in the Change Process. In S. Jimerson, M. Burns, & A. VanDerHeyden (Eds.), The Handbook of Response to Intervention: The Science and Practice of Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (2nd ed.). New York: Springer.


Freeman, R., Miller, D., & Newcomer, L. (2015). Integration of Academic and Behavioral MTSS at the District Level using Implementation Science. Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, 13(1), 59-72.


Miller, D., Kraft, N. (2014). Best Practices in partnering with parents in school-based services. In A. Thomas & P. Harrison (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology-VI. Washington, D.C.: National Association of School Psychologists.


Freeman, R., Perrin, N., Irvin, L., Vincent, C., Newcomer, L., Moore, M., Miller, D., et al., (2010). Positive behavior support across the lifespan: Expanding the concept of statewide planning for large scale organizational systems change (PBS Kansas Monograph No.1). Lawrence, KS: University of Kansas, Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies.


Miller, D., Kraft, N. (2008). Best practices in communicating and involving families. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology-V. Washington, D.C.: National Association of School Psychologists.


Miller, D., & Mather, K. (2005). Student Improvement Teams. In S. Lee (Ed.), Encyclopedia of School Psychology. Lawrence: Sage Publications.


Baker, S., & Hubbard, D. D. (2002). Best practices in the assessment of written expression. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology-IV . Washington, D.C.: National Association of School Psychologists.


Hubbard, D. D., & Adams, J. (2002). Best practices in facilitating meaningful family involvement in educational decision making. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology-IV . Washington, D.C.: National Association of School Psychologists.


Mather, K., & Miller, D. (2002). Student improvement team participant handbook. Topeka, KS: Kansas State Department of Education.


Baker, S., & Hubbard, D. D. (1995). Best practices in the assessment of written expression. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology-III (pp. 717-730). Washington, D.C.: National Association of School Psychologists.


Shinn, M. R., & Hubbard, D. D. (1993). Curriculum-based measurement and problem-solving assessment: Basic procedures and outcomes. In E. L. Meyen, G. A. Vergason, & R. J. Whelan (Eds.), Challenges facing special education (pp. 193-226). Denver: Love.


Miller, D. (November 2017). Revisiting all means all: Specially designed instruction within an MTSS. Invited workshop for the North Carolina State Conference, Greenboro, NC.

Miller, D. (2017). MTSS for young children: Creating continuity between Early Childhood, Head Start, and Elementary systems. Invited training for the Indianhead Community Action Agency, Ladysmith, WI.

Miller, D. (2016). Our Opportunity with MTSS: One system, all children, continuum of supports. Invited keynote at the Mississippi Professional Learning Institute, Jackson, MS.

Miller, D. (2016). Doing things different and doing different things. Invited presentation at the Oregon RtI Conference, Eugene, OR.

Miller, D. (2016). Three peas in a pod: MTSS, Differentiation and UDL. Invited presentation at the Vermont BEST Summer Institute, Killington, VT.

Miller, D. (2016). MTSS and Special Education: All students, one system, continuum of supports. Invited keynote at the Maryland Professional Learning Institute, Baltimore, MD.

Miller, D. (2015). What it takes: Providing high quality instruction for child and student outcomes. Panel participant at the OSEP Leadership Conference, Washington, D.C.

Miller, D. & McSheehan, M. (2015). Creating a positive school culture through an integrated educational framework. Vermont BEST Institute, Killington, VT.

Miller, D. & Meisenheimer, J. (2015). Coast to coast: Two state examples of creating strong and sustainable inclusive schools. Strategies for Educational Improvement Conference, Lawrence, KS.

Miller, D. (2014). Visible focus on first instruction. Vermont Professional Learning Institute, Castleton, Vermont.

Miller, D. & Reed, K. (2014). The impact of MTSS on Student Improvement Teams. KSDE Effective Schools Conference, Wichita, KS.

Tilly, D. & Miller, D. (2014). RtI and special education: Political bedfellows or kissin’ cousins. RtI Innovations Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Miller, D., & Wolfe, J. (2013). A district model for integrated RtI systems. Presented at the KSDE Annual Conference, Wichita, KS.

Miller, D. (2013). A district model for integrated RtI systems. Invited presentation at the Missouri PBIS Conference, Osage Beach, MO.

Miller, D. (2013) Building a Tiered System at the Secondary Level. Invited training at the ESU 3, Omaha, NE.

Miller, D. & Freeman, R. (2013). Building an Integrated Tiered System of Support: Current

District Work and Future Multi‐Agency Collaboration. Invited presentation at the Kansas Transition Summit, Wichita, KS.

Miller, D. (2012). Building a Sustainable Integrated Tiered System of Support. Facilitated training with the Iowa City District Leadership Team. Iowa City, Iowa.

Allison, R. & Miller, D. (2012). Fifteen years of innovation: How special education is impacted by RtI. RtI Innovations Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Goodman, S. & Miller, D. (2012). A district model for integrated RtI systems. Presented at the National PBIS Leadership Forum, Rosemont, IL.

Miller, D. (2012). Visible learning: Leading Short Bets for Impact. Invited address for principal leadership retreat, Hinkley, MN.

Miller, D. (2012). A Focus on Literacy Instruction at the Secondary Level. Invited training for the South Sarpy School District, NE.

Miller, D. & Wolfe, J. (June 2011). Blending a Tiered System for Behavior and Academics. Invited presentation for the Missouri PBIS Summer Institute, Columbia, MO.

Miller, D. (June 2011). Leadership for MTSS. Invited presentation for KanLEAD administrator project, Greenbush, KS.

Miller, D. (2011) Next steps for the big 5! Invited workshop training for the Nebraska NASCD Fall Conference, Ashland, NE.

Miller, D. (2011). The Mechanism to make change happen for staff, students, and families. Invited strand presenter: Integrating Positive Behavioral and Reading Supports. Annual Research to Practice Conference, University of Oregon Center for Teaching and Learning, Portland, Oregon.

Miller, D. (2010). Reactions to Jack Fletcher’s paper on LD identification in RtI. Invited panel participant at the NCLD Leadership Forum, Washington D.C.

Miller, D. (2010). RtI: Expecting and capitalizing on the dissonance. Invited convocation address for Edina School District, Edina, MN.

Goodman, S., Gibbons, K., & Miller, D. (2010). District-Level Implementation of RtI. RtI Innovations Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Miller, D. (2010). Problem-Solving Process in RtI. Invited presentation at the Indiana

Response to Instruction Conference. Indianapolis, Indiana.

Goodman, S., Dorman, C., & Miller, D. (2009). District-Level Implementation of RtI. RtI Innovations Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Miller, D. & Stokes, T. (2009). A journey of change: From reading first to district response-to-intervention. Presented at the 35th Plains IRA Regional Conference, Branson, MO.

Miller, D. (2008). Multi-tiered system of support: Recreating for academic and behavioral success. Invited keynote, Kansas State University Summer Symposium.

Miller, D. & Riley, C. (2008). Multi-tiered system of supports in Kansas. Invited presentation for Paola USD.

Miller, D. & Freeman, R. (2007). Multi-tiered system of support: How academic and behavioral supports are structured for success. Invited presentation at the Kansas Conference for School Counselors Conference.

Miller, D. & Freeman, R. (2007). District-wide planning for multi-tiered system of supports. Presentation at the Kansas Effective Schools Conference.

Miller, D. (2005). Assessment That Informs Effective Instruction and Intervention: The Role of the School Psychologist in a Multi-Tiered Model. Invited panel participant at the National Association of School Psychologists Conference.

Miller, D. (2005). Growing the problem-solving process: Lessons learned from Kansas. Invited presentation for the Oregon School Psychologist Association and the Portland Public Schools.

Miller, D. (2005). Using data to direct parent understanding and involvement in literacy development. Inservices coordinated through the Kansas Parent Involvement and Resource Center.

Miller, D. (2005). (Really) Using data to direct school, classroom, and individual decisions. Presented at the DIBELS Summit, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Miller, D. (2004). The Problem-Solving Process in Kansas: Implementation and Influence on Special Education Eligibility. Invited presentation at the Oregon School Psychologist Association Conference.

Miller, D. (2004). The Problem-Solving Process: Extending the Process to School-wide and Targeted Groups in Kansas. Invited presentation at the Oregon School Psychologist Association Conference.

Miller, D. (2002, November). Using DIBELS data to drive decision making at the district, building, classroom, and individual student level. Inservice for DeSoto School District, DeSoto, Kansas.

Miller, D. (2001). Using a Problem-Solving Approach to facilitate Education Decision Making. Invited presentation at the Florida Council for Exceptional Children Conference.

Hubbard, D., & Boyce, K. (1997). First Step to Success: A combination school and home intervention to address young students displaying inappropriate behaviors. Presented at the Council for Exceptional Children conference, Wichita, KS.

Hubbard, D. (1995, April). Curriculum-Based Measurement and Problem-Solving Assessment: Redefining Educational Decision Making. Presentation sponsored by the Oklahoma State Board of Education Special Education Section, Tulsa and Oklahoma City.

Hubbard, D. (1994). Monitoring student progress and making data-based decisions. Invited panel participant at the Central States School Psychology conference, Tulsa, OK.

Hubbard, D. (1994, October). How Curriculum-Based Measurement data assist with Title I decision making. Presented at the Title I Improvement conference, Wichita, KS.

Hubbard, D., & Campbell-Layman, L. (1994, February). Behavioral observations and data-based decision making. Inservice presentation for the NEKESC, Oskaloosa, KS.


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Grant Experiences

Using technology to facilitate district and building-level literacy and behavioral outcomes for students across Kansas. Kan-Ed special project, Northeast Kansas Education Service Center and the University of Kansas 2006. Author.


Using Alternative Assessment Procedures Within a Problem-Solving Model to Improve Educational Decision Making and Student Outcomes. Title VI-B, IDEA Discretionary Special Project, Kansas State Board of Education, 3 years, initiated 1995. Author.


Training Special Education Leadership Personnel in Curriculum-Based Assessment. Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education, 5 years, 1989-1993.