Answer The Teachers Question

This is what I wrote

The RTI model is based on research conducted by some of this nation’s leading educators and researchers. While the RTI model provides a valid means for identifying students, another benefit of RTI is that it merges special education into the overall policies of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) such as having clear standards, useful measurement and sound instructional practices. It clearly lays the groundwork for bringing a new focus on enhancing the performance of all students including those with disabilities through a common system in which classroom teachers, special education teachers and other specialists can work together.  What makes learning more difficult for these students is we sometimes try to make students change their learning style when it is our instruction that should change. RTI can and should be used for any student that is experiencing difficulty in our schools. To determine the relative effectiveness of interventions for struggling early readers are briefly listed below:  

 Extensive interventions can be effective even when provided by relatively low-cost implementer when appropriate training is provided and the interventions are fairly structured and delivered one-on-one or in groups of two or three students.

2. In studies that included a follow-up assessment, gains from early extensive interventions appear to be maintained over time, at least into second grade.

3. All of the effective early interventions examined in these studies shared four essential elements: training in phonological awareness, decoding, and word study; guided and independent reading of progressively more difficult texts; writing exercises; and engaging students in practicing comprehension strategies while reading text.

4. Other elements of these interventions that may be related to their success include group size (one-on-one, small group), the daily or near-daily frequency of the intervention sessions, and the early identification (in K or Grade 1) of students in need of intervention. These elements were evident though not directly tested in most relevant research studies.

5. We know considerably more about the effectiveness of early interventions than we do about interventions provided at later stages of development.

6. Considerably more research is needed on students whose response to treatment is relatively low.

Most of these implications apply best to students who are judged to be among the 20% to 25% most at risk for reading problems at the beginning of kindergarten, first, or second grade. As the research intervention literature extends to more severely disabled students, these conclusions may need to be modified.


Turnbull, A., Turnbull, R., Shogren, K.A., & Wehmeyer, M. (2016).  Exceptional lives: Special education in today’s schools.

Retrieved: Extensive Reading Interventions in Grades K-3: From Research to Practice,

This is what the instructor ask

You have described Response to Intervention systems.  All RtI systems with which I am familiar include three levels of interventions.  These three levels have been given various names, but often are simply referred to as Tier One, Tier Two and Tier Three.  Tier One instruction is to be of high quality for all students.  It includes strategies and other supports.  About 80% of learners should be successful with this kind of instruction.  Tier Two includes targeted, intensive small group instruction in addition to the instruction which is provided at Tier One. This Tier Two instruction should meet the needs of another 15% of learners.  Finally, Tier Three instruction is intensive and individualized and should meet the needs of the remaining 5% of learners. (Raymond, 2012)

Now, put yourself in the shoes of a school principal.  Let’s say that you find that 50% of your students need Tier Two instruction and another 20% need Tier Three instruction.  You have to decide where to put your resources.  At which of the three tiers in your Response to Intervention system would you put your resources for the greatest return on investment?  Why would you choose that tier?

Instructor Quinn

Raymond, E.B. (2012).  Learners with mild disabilities: A characteristics approach (4th ed.).  Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.

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