What is RTI(Response to Intervention)?- an explanation for parents

What is RTI?

RTI is a tiered process of instruction that allows schools to identify struggling students early and provide appropriate instructional interventions. Early intervention means more chances for success and less need for special education services. RTI would also address the needs of children who previously did not qualify for special education.

RTI Should be a School Wide Model

Although, a schools model may look different, there are several essential and necessary components that parents need be aware of:

  • Scientifically Research Based Instruction – All children should receive research based reading instruction in the general education classroom.
  • School Wide Screening – Schools should screen all children early to determine if they are “at risk.”
  • Continuous Progress Monitoring – Schools should monitor the progress of all “at risk” children to determine if they are benefiting from instruction.
  • Fidelity – Schools must use any program or curriculum correctly and as intended.
  • Procedural Safeguards – Schools must ensure parents are aware of their rights.

Tiers in RTI

RTI is a delivered to students in tiers or levels. There is much discussion about how many tiers should be in RTI models. The three-tiered model is the most common. This means there are different levels of intervention, based on the needs of the student. The level of intervention increases in intensity if a child does not respond to instruction.

IDEA does not specify how many tiers an RTI model must contain. IDEA does not specify how long a child must remain in one tier before moving to the next level. The US Department of Education left this to the states to determine.

What RTI is NOT

  • Special seating in classroom
  • Shortened assignments
  • Parent-teacher conferences
  • Suspension
  • Retention
  • “More of the same” general classroom instruction
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