A Special Look at RTI
Dear District Administrator,
Welcome to the latest edition of Achievement Today. Much of this issue is devoted to the topic of Response to Intervention (RTI), a general education initiative that offers great promise in meeting the needs of struggling learners.
Recently, Spectrum K12 and the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE) surveyed K12 administrators about RTI. While RTI is on almost every district's agenda, it's also evident that most districts are in the early stages of implementation. For example, nearly 75 percent predicted that RTI will be fully implemented and in daily use in their districts by the 2008-2009 school year - but more than 50 percent said they don't yet have a defined RTI process, and almost 75 percent have trained less than half their district staff. It was also clear that districts are looking for professional development to assist in district-wide RTI adoption and software to manage and measure the full range of activities, interventions and outcomes used to help all students achieve academic success.
RTI is often misperceived as a special education initiative instead of a process that can help any struggling student. Our survey indicated that only a small majority of districts - 52 percent - said their RTI initiative was championed by special education staff. The rest said their RTI process was spearheaded by general education administrators.
Not surprisingly, most districts said it is too early to evaluate the impact of RTI on improvement in AYP or on the number of referrals to special education. What we did see is that reading is the primary focal point of RTI (52 percent), followed by math (24 percent) and behavior (20 percent).
Clearly, RTI will play an ever-increasing role in the way districts work with at-risk children. To that end, I hope you find the reports about RTI in this publication to be informative and helpful.
Jim Marshall, President & CEO, Spectrum K12 School Solutions, Inc.
PS: To view the full results of our RTI survey, please visit www.spectrumk12.com/rti_survey_results.