Tuesday, September 18, 2012

RTI, A Little More Informed

There are some pieces of Response to Intervention (RTI) that stand out as really valuable. The ideas of shifting resources to educating rather than classifying students, providing more opportunities to learn to students in need, visual record keeping, and adjusting the educational approach as necessary are the things we should be doing for everyone if you ask me (Dickman, 2006). However, there are also aspects that seem burdensome. Testing students every two weeks sounds like a test in patience for teacher and student. Just the other day a student in my class asked if we were going to have a test every  week. Of course this is how progress is charted and intervention is adjusted, so it's a necessary evil.

The most easily recognizable benefit to RTI is that it eliminates the old situation of waiting for students to fail before seeking help (Klotz & Canter, 2007). This is so important. Just one bad school year can make it nearly impossible for a student to catch back up. I can't imagine how a slow decline to the point of failure could damage a student's chances for success.

One thing I found interesting was that rather than saying the intervention should end when students meet some goal or are "on level," the Problem Solving & Response to Intervention Project (2011) states that intervention should continue as long as student shows a positive response. Is this true even if students catch up to their peers?

Ultimately, my opinion of RTI is just that it is what we have right now. I don't think I can really say whether it's great or awful until I'm in the classroom every day living it. Then I will not only be able to get the feel for using it, I will have a better reference for some day in the future when something else seems like it would work better. For now, RTI seems like a good idea to help students from falling away.


Dickman, G.E. (2006). RTI and reading: Response to intervention in a nutshell. Retrieved from http://www.readingrockets.org/article/14596/

Education Evolving. (2005). Response to intervention: An alternative for traditional eligibility criteria for students with disabilities. Saint Paul, MN: Wedl, R. J. 

Klotz, M. B., & Canter, A. (2007). Response to Intervention (RTI): A primer for parents. Retrieved from http://www.nasponline.org/resources/handouts/revisedPDFs/rtiprimer.pdf

Problem Solving & Response to Intervention Project. (2011). FAQs. Retrieved from http://floridarti.usf.edu/floridaproject/faq.html

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