Skip to main content


Go Search
ESE Services

ESE > Private Schools

Accommodations versus Modifications versus Interventions

  • Accommodations are changes to the way the child is expected to learn or how the child is tested.
    • Accommodations can help students learn the same material and meet the same expectations as their classmates.
    • Accommodations do NOT change what the student is expected to master. The objectives of the course/activity remain the same.
    • Examples of accommodations:
      • Extended time on assignments or assessments
      • Braille or large print materials
      • Shortened assignments and/or assessments
      • Slant boards or study carrels

  • Modifications are changes to what the child is expected to learn.
    • Modifications apply to students who are far behind their peers and may need changes to their curriculum.
    • Modifications DO change what the student is expected to master, as the course/activity objectives are modified/changed to meet the needs of each learner.
    • Examples of Modifications:
      • Instruction focuses on one grade-level skill, rather than ALL of the grade-level standards or skills expected.
      • Changes are made to the grading scale or scoring rubrics.
      • The complexity of the activity is reduced (such as only one step as opposed to multiple steps to solve a problem)
    • Modifications are access points and not grade level standards that only lead to a diploma access point/employment designation

  • Interventions refer to a specific program or set of steps designed to help a student improve in an identified area of need. This is implemented when a child demonstrates a need and requires assistance in a specific area. For example, if the child is "acting out," the school may develop a behavioral intervention to help in the classroom. In academic subjects, such as reading and math, instructional interventions could be developed (referred to frequently as "academic" interventions).
    • Interventions typically include these components:
      • The intervention is intentional- aimed at a particular weakness.
      • The intervention is specific and formal; it often lasts weeks or months and is reviewed at set intervals.
      • The interventions will be set up in such a way that both parents and the school can monitor the child's progress and how they are responding to the specific supports.


Image of Circle of Children Holding Hands