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Response to Intervention

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The Facts About RTI


Determining School Readiness

Determining Readiness to Plan and Implement an RTI Framework Developing and implementing a significant school improvement initiative such as Response to Intervention requires certain pre-conditions of readiness. The following are links to tools and resources that can help schools and districts determine where they are in developing and implementing a Response to Intervention framework and managing a change initiative.


KEYS Continuous School Improvement (CSI) Tool

KEYS is a comprehensive, school-based assessment and improvement system designed to provide education employees, parents, members of the community—all education stakeholders —with information useful for improving teaching and learning. School communities that embark on this initiative begin with a prescribed survey, a diagnostic instrument that provides objective data on 42 indicators of school quality that define high performing schools.

The indicators are clustered into six integrated keys:

  1. Shared Understanding and Commitment to High Goals
  2. Open Communication and Collaborative Problem Solving
  3. Continuous Assessment for Teaching and Learning
  4. Personal and Professional Learning
  5. Resources To Support Teaching and Learning
  6. Curriculum and Instruction


IDEA Partnership Project

The IDEA Partnership has developed a series of Dialogue Guides on multiple topics related to special education. Dialogue guides are written for general audiences that include many different stakeholders. Each guide includes specific dialogue starters for local administrators, family, practitioners (teachers and related service providers), policymakers, and higher education personnel.

The content of the Response to Intervention Dialogue Guide is based on the information in the online modules developed by the IRIS Center. Each Dialogue Guide has 3 parts:

  • Facilitator's Handbook to help you think about inviting others into a dialogue,
  • Topical documents with content information to ground the dialogue, and
  • Dialogue Starters, written by stakeholders, who identify questions to guide the dialogue.

The RTI Dialogue Guide includes the following sections:

  • Struggling Readers
  • Classroom Assessment
  • IQ-Achievement Discrepancy Model
  • What is RTI?
  • Rationale for RTI
  • Two approaches to Response to Intervention


The IRIS Center for Training Enhancements

The IRIS Center aims to provide high-quality resources for faculty and professional development providers. It provides free, online, interactive training enhancements that translate research about the education of students with disabilities into practice. All materials are freely available for use via the website and may be printed without permission. The 4-Part modules on RTI can be accessed by clicking Resources, Star Legacy Modules, then scrolling down to the Differentiated Instruction section.


The National Center on Response to Intervention

This Center’s mission is to provide technical assistance and dissemination about proven and promising models for RTI and EIS to state and local educators, families, and other stakeholders. The Center will work in four areas: (a) knowledge production, which involves a Technical Review Committee of experts who will independently evaluate the scientific rigor, conditions for successful implementation, and the cultural and linguistic competence of all identified models (and components); (b) implementation supports, which involve training and follow-up activities to scale-up RTI and EIS on a broad scale; (c) information dissemination, which involves forming communities of practice to improve the likelihood that consumers will adopt RTI models; and (d) formative evaluation, which involves an assessment of the quality, implementation, impact, and cost effectiveness of the services offered.


National Research Center on Learning Disabilities (NRCLD)

The NRCLD Learning Disabilities Resource Kit - Specific Learning Disabilities Determination Procedures and Responsiveness to Intervention

NRCLD has devloped this kit to help you navigate changes related to specific learning disability determination and responsiveness to intervention. All materials in this kit are in the public domain. Authorization to reproduce them in part or in whole is granted.

The kit includes:

Also, you may download the complete Learning Disabilities Resource Kit at


National Center on Student Progress Monitoring

This site has downloadable articles, PowerPoint presentations, Frequently Asked Question documents, and additional resources about screening, student progress monitoring, Curriculum-Based Measurement, applying decision making to IEPs and other researched based topics. All publications are designed to inform and assist audiences in implementing student progress monitoring at the classroom, building, local or state level. In addition, the Center has established a standard process to evaluate the scientific rigor of commercially available tools to monitor student’s progress.

Review the tools at


The Center on Instruction

The Special Education Strand of the Center on Instruction hosted a one-day symposium in April 2006, on Response to Intervention. Information was provided on recent empirical and practical developments related to RTI models and methods. PowerPoint presentations are available for downloading at:

In addition, this project maintains a comprehensive compendium of RTI-related resources and products that currently exist within educational organizations and plans to conduct site visits to five sites that are successfully using elements of tiered delivery of instructional services within a RTI model.


The National High School Center

This Center serves as a central source of information and expertise on high school improvement for the Regional Comprehensive Centers (RCCs). They assist the RCCs in building the capacity of states across the nation to execute the goals of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB). They also identify effective programs and tools, offer user-friendly products, and provide high-quality technical assistance to support the use of research-based decisions as they relate to high schools.

The Center has developed a resource that provides an in-depth look at the implementation and structural issues, as well as the needed support required to successfully institute Response to Intervention (RTI) at the secondary school level. It defines the RTI models, explores benefits and challenges faced at the high school level, shares a snapshot of implementation at the high school level, and outlines the necessary resources needed to support this work.


Project Forum

Project Forum published proceedings from a policy forum held on Response to Intervention (RTI) and Early Intervening Services (EIS) jointly sponsored by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) in December, 2006 -- Response to Intervention as it Relates to Early Intervening Services: Recommendations.


Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports

The Center has been established to give schools capacity-building information and technical assistance for identifying, adapting, and sustaining effective school-wide disciplinary practices. The overall goals of the TA Center on PBIS are to:

  1. identify and enhance knowledge about, and practical demonstration of, school-wide PBS practices, systems and outcomes along the three-tiered continuum (primary, secondary, tertiary); and
  2. develop, conduct and evaluate technical assistance and dissemination efforts that allow evidence-based practices to be implemented on a large scale with high durability and effectiveness.

The PBIS Center has recently released a newsletter article on the relationship between PBIS and RTI. This article can be accessed at


Center for Early Literacy Learning (CELL)

This project is in year 1 and is using a tiered model of intervention approach as part of their conceptual framework in identifying evidence-based practices that promote literacy and language development in young children (0-5).

  • Tier 1 includes literacy rich learning opportunities that are the contexts for skill acquisition for all young children;
  • Tier 2 includes specific instructional practices that promotes literacy learning for all young children; and
  • Tier 3 includes specialized practices for supporting the literacy learning of young children with disabilities or learning difficulties that need more specialized interventions.

CELL is currently conducting research syntheses on various practices that promote language and literacy. Based on their research syntheses, they will ultimately be developing 6 practice guide tool kits for practitioners and families that address various age levels (infant, toddler, preschooler), formal and informal practices, different literacy related competencies (print-related and linguistic processing), and the three tiers of intervention. CELL will be providing general TA to a wide audience and working intensively with a small number of States.


Center for Evidence-based Practices to Improve Social Emotional Development of Young Children

One of the activities of this Center is to coordinate with the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning (CSEFEL) a project jointly funded by the Office of Head Start (OHS) and the Child Care Bureau (CCB). In our conversations with OHS and CCB on how to coordinate the work of these two Centers we have discussed using a tiered intervention model, where CSEFEL focuses their efforts on Tier 1 and 2 and the OSEP funded Center focuses their efforts on Tier 2 and 3.


Response to Intervention as an Approach to Preventing and Identifying Learning Disabilities in Reading

Funded by the Institute of Education Sciences, National Center on Special Education Research, this project is investigating key measurement issues associated with the Response to Intervention process: Research questions include: Who should enter the RTI process? How does one determine whether effective Tier 2 intervention has been conducted? What is a valid and practical method of monitoring responsiveness to Tier 2 instruction? What is a valid definition of 'nonresponsiveness' (i.e., reading disabled [RD])?

Maine Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (ME PBIS)

PBIS is a decision-making framework that guides selection, integration, and implementation of the best evidence-based academic and behavioral practices for improving academic and behavioral outcomes for all children. It is a three-tiered model which follows the public health approach to prevention by providing more intensive supports for children not responding adequately to a universal system of support. PBIS provides systems for schools to design, implement, and evaluate effective school wide, classroom, non-classroom, and children-specific discipline plans. There are more than 10,000 schools in at least 44 states across the U.S. implementing universal school wide PBIS.


Response to Intervention Blueprint Series

NASDSEhas two documents in its Response to Intervention (RtI) Blueprint series that are available for free download and/or purchase of print copies.The two Blueprints, Response to Intervention Blueprints for Implementation: District Level and Response to Intervention Blueprints for Implementation: School Building Level, provide step-by-step implementation guidelines, resources and tips from RtI implementers with many years of experience. The Blueprints are intentionally designed to provide a framework around which RtI implementation can be built.

The Blueprints were developed jointly by NASDSE and the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE).

  • To download a free copy of the District Level Blueprint, click here.
  • To download afree copy of the School Building Level Blueprint, click here.

Print copies of the Blueprints are available for just $10 each plus a smallshipping and handling fee. To order print copies, please click here.

Please note that the final document in the series, the State Level Blueprint, will be available in the near future.






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