Response to Intervention (RtI)

Response to Intervention (RtI)

RtI, is the practice of (1) providing high-quality instruction/intervention matched to student needs and (2) using learning rate over time and level of performance to (3) make important educational decisions. These three components of RtI are essential.

High-quality instruction/intervention:
Instruction that has been demonstrated through scientific research to produce high learning rates for most students.

Learning rate and level of performance:
Learning rate refers to a student’s growth in achievement over time compared to prior levels of performance and peer growth rates. Level of performance refers to a student’s relative achievement compared to the expected performance. Decisions about the use of more or less intense interventions are made using information on learning rate and level.

Important educational decisions about intensity and duration of interventions are based on individual student response to instruction across multiple tiers of intervention. Decisions about the necessity of more intense interventions, including eligibility for special education, exit for special education or other services, are informed by data on learning rate and level.

Core RtI Principles

  • We can effectively teach all children. All RtI practices are founded on the assumption and belief that all children can learn.
  • Intervene early. It is best to intervene early with learning and behavior problems, when problems are relatively small.
  • Use a multi-tier model of service delivery. Instruction must be differentiated in both nature and intensity.
  • Use a problem-solving method to make decisions within a multi-tier model. Research has supported the effectiveness of using a clearly defined method to determine student need and to develop and evaluate interventions.
  • Use research-based, scientifically validated interventions/instructions to the extent available. Students need to be exposed to curriculum and teaching that has demonstrated effectiveness for the type of student and the setting.
  • Monitor student progress to inform instruction. Student progress must be monitored. Determining the effectiveness (or lack) of an intervention early is important to maximize the impact of the intervention for the student.
  • Use data to make decisions. A data-based decision regarding student response to intervention is central to RtI practices. Decisions in RtI practice are based on professional judgment informed directly by student performance data.
  • Use assessment for three different purposes. In RtI, three types of assessment are used: (1) screening of all children; (2) diagnostics to determine what children can and cannot do; (3) progress monitoring to determine if interventions are working.

Quoted directly from National Association of State Directors of Special Education, Inc. (2005). Response to intervention: Policy considerations and implementation. Alexandria, VA: NASDSE, Inc.

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