Critical RTI Elements: A Checklist - Intervention Central

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‘How RTI Works’ Series 2013 Jim Wrightwww.interventioncentral.org1Critical RTI Elements: A ChecklistThe elements below are important components of the RTI model. Review each element and discuss how to implementit in your school or district:Tier 1 Interventions: Evidence-Based & Implemented With IntegrityTier 1: Classroom Interventions. The classroom teacher is the ‘first responder’ for students with academic delays.Classroom efforts to instruct and individually support the student should be documented.AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented Inadequate or incorrectly YESTier 1: High-Quality Core Instruction. The student receives high NOquality core instruction in the area of academic concern. ‘High quality’ focused core instruction mayis defined as at least 80% of students in the classroom or grade level be an explanation for thestudent’s academic delays.performing at or above gradewide academic screening benchmarksthrough classroom instructional support alone (Christ, 2008). YESTier 1: Classroom Intervention. The classroom teacher givesAn absence of individualized NOadditional individualized academic support to the student beyond that classroom support or a poorlyprovided in core instruction.focused classroom interventionplan may contribute to the The teacher documents those strategies on a Tier 1student’s academic delays.intervention plan. Intervention ideas contained in the plan meet the district’scriteria as ‘evidence-based’. Student academic baseline and goals are calculated, andprogress-monitoring data are collected to measure theimpact of the plan. The classroom intervention is attempted for a periodsufficiently long (e.g., 4-8 instructional weeks) to fullyassess its effectiveness. YESTier 1: Intervention Integrity. Data are collected to verify that theWithout intervention-integrity NOintervention is carried out with integrity (Gansle & Noell, 2007; Roach data, it is impossible to discernwhether academic& Elliott, 2008). Relevant intervention-integrity data includeunderperformance is due to theinformation about:student’s ‘non-response’ to Frequency and length of intervention sessions.intervention or due to an Ratings by the interventionist or an independent observerintervention that was poorly orabout whether all steps of the intervention are beinginconsistently carried out.conducted correctly.Tier 1: Decision Point: Teacher Consultation/Team MeetingDecision Points: At Tier 1, the school has set up procedures for teachers and other staff to discuss students who needintervention, to analyze data about their school performance, to design intervention and progress-monitoring plans, and toschedule follow-up meetings on the student(s).AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented YESTier 1: Classroom Teacher Problem-Solving Meetings. TheIf the school does not provide NOschool has set up a forum for teachers to discuss students who need teachers with guidance andTier 1 (classroom) interventions and to schedule follow-up meetingssupport in creating Tier 1to evaluate progress. That forum takes one of two forms:intervention plans, it cannotanswer whether each teacher is Consultant. The school compiles a list of consultants in theschool who can meet with individual teachers or grade-level consistently followingrecommended practices inteams to discuss specific students and to help the teacherdeveloping those plans.to create and to document an intervention plan. Grade-Level Team. The school trains grade-level teams toconduct problem-solving meetings. Teachers are expected

‘How RTI Works’ Series 2013 Jim Wrightwww.interventioncentral.org2to bring students to regularly scheduled team meetings todiscuss them and to create and document an interventionplan.Tier 2/3 Interventions: Evidence-Based & Implemented With IntegrityTiers 2 & 3: Supplemental Interventions. Interventions at Tiers 2 & 3 supplement core instruction and specifically target thestudent’s academic deficits.AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented YESTier 2/3 Interventions: Minimum Number & Length. The student’s A foundation assumption of RTI NOcumulative RTI information indicates that an adequate effort in theis that a general-educationgeneral-education setting has been made to provide supplementalstudent with academicinterventions at Tiers 2 & 3. The term ‘sufficient effort’ includes thedifficulties is typical and simplyneeds targeted instructionalexpectation that within the student’s general education setting:support to be successful. A minimum number of separate Tier 2/3 intervention trialsTherefore, strong evidence (i.e.,(e.g., three) are attempted.several documented, ‘good Each intervention trial lasts a minimum period of time (e.g.,faith’ intervention attempts) is6-8 instructional weeks).needed before the school canmove beyond the assumptionthat the student is typical toconsider whether there arepossible ‘within-child’ factorssuch as a learning disabilitythat best explain the student’sacademic difficulties.Supplemental intervention YESTier 2/3 Interventions: Essential Elements. Each Tier 2/3programs are compromised if NOintervention plan shows evidence that:they are not based on research, Instructional programs or practices used in the interventionare too large, or includemeet the district’s criteria of ‘evidence-based.students with very discrepant The intervention has been selected because it logicallyintervention needs. Schoolsaddressed the area(s) of academic deficit for the targetcannot have confidence in thestudent (e.g., an intervention to address reading fluencyimpact of such potentiallywas chosen for a student whose primary deficit was incompromised supplementalreading fluency).intervention programs. If the intervention is group-based, all students enrolled inthe Tier 2/3 intervention group have a shared interventionneed that could reasonably be addressed through the groupinstruction provided. The student-teacher ratio in the group-based interventionprovides adequate student support. NOTE: For Tier 2,group sizes should be capped at 7 students. Tier 3interventions may be delivered in smaller groups (e.g., 3students or fewer) or individually. The intervention provides contact time adequate to thestudent academic deficit. NOTE: Tier 2 interventions shouldtake place a minimum of 3-5 times per week in sessions of30 minutes or more; Tier 3 interventions should take placedaily in sessions of 30 minutes or more (Burns & Gibbons,2008). YESTier 2/3 Interventions: Intervention Integrity. Data are collected to Without intervention-integrity NOverify that the intervention is carried out with integrity (Gansle &data, it is impossible to discernNoell, 2007; Roach & Elliott, 2008). Relevant intervention-integritywhether academicdata include information about:underperformance is due to the

‘How RTI Works’ Series 2013 Jim Wright www.interventioncentral.orgFrequency and length of intervention sessions.Ratings by the interventionist or an independent observerabout whether all steps of the intervention are beingconducted correctly.3student’s ‘non-response’ tointervention or due to anintervention that was poorly orinconsistently carried out.Decision Point for Tier 2: Data Analysis TeamDecision Points: At Tier 2, the school has set up procedures for teachers and other staff to discuss students who needintervention, to analyze data about their school performance, to design intervention and progress-monitoring plans, and toschedule follow-up meetings on the student(s).AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented YESTier 2: Data Analysis Team. The school has established a DataIf the school lacks a functioning NOAnalysis Team at Tier 2 to evaluate the school-wide screening dataData Analysis Team, there arecollected three times per year and to place students who need Tier 2 likely to be several importantquestions left unanswered,interventions. The Data Analysis Teamsuch as the following: is knowledgeable of all intervention personnel and evidencebased programs available for Tier 2 interventions. Are screening data beingused to bring consistency knows how to identify students who have failed to meetand objectivity to theexpected screening benchmarksselection of students who can use the benchmarks to estimate the risk for academicneed Tier 2 intervention?failure of each student picked up in the screening Are the intervention is able to match identified students to appropriate interventionsprograms at Tier 2while providing students with sufficient instructional support.'evidence-based'? can document the Tier 2 intervention set up for each student Is the progress of studentsreceiving Tier 2NOTE: It is also recommended that the Data Analysis Team meet atintervention reviewedleast once between each screening period to review the progress ofevery 6-8 instructionalstudents on Tier 2 intervention, to apply screening benchmarks, andweeks to ensure thatto decide for each student whether to maintain the currentstudents don't remain inintervention, change the Tier 2 intervention, move the student toineffective interventionsmore intensive Tier 3 intervention, or (if improved) discontinue theand don't continue toTier 2 intervention and transition the student to Tier 1 support alone.occupy intervention 'slots'after they have closed theacademic gap with peers?Decision Point for Tier 3: RTI Problem-Solving TeamDecision Points: At Tier 3, the school has set up procedures for teachers and other staff to discuss students who needintervention, to analyze data about their school performance, to design intervention and progress-monitoring plans, and toschedule follow-up meetings on the student(s).AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented YESTier 3: RTI Problem-Solving Team. The school has established anThe RTI Problem-Solving Team'RTI Problem-Solving Team' to create customized intervention plansis the 'decision point' in the NOfor individual students who require Tier 3 (intensive) interventions.school that ensures thatThe RTI Problem-Solving Team:students with Tier 3 academic has created clear guidelines for when to accept a Tier 3 student or behavioral needs receiveinterventions that are wellreferral. follows a consistent, structured problem-solving model during its documented, well-implemented,and sufficiently intensive tomeetings.match the student's serious schedules initial meetings to discuss student concerns anddeficits. Most Special Educationfollow-up meetings to review student progress and judgeEligibility Teams use Tier 3whether the intervention plan is effective.

‘How RTI Works’ Series 2013 Jim Wright www.interventioncentral.orgdevelops written intervention plans with sufficient detail toensure that the intervention is implemented with fidelity acrosssettings and people.builds an ‘intervention bank’ of research-based interventionideas for common student academic and behavioral concerns.4Problem-Solving Teams as aquality-control mechanism andgate-keeper that preventsstudents from being referred forpossible special educationservices until the school hasfirst exhausted all generaleducation service options.School-Wide Academic Screenings: General Outcome Measures and Skill-BasedMeasuresPeer Norms: The school selects efficient measures with good technical adequacy to be used to screen all students at agrade level in targeted academic areas.AdequatelyRTI ElementIf this element is incomplete,Documented?missing, or undocumented YESSelection of Academic Screening Measures. The school hasAcademic screening measuresprovide a shared standard for NOselected appropriate grade-level screening measures for theassessing student academicacademic skill area(s) in which the target student struggles (Hosp,risk. If appropriate gradewideHosp & Howell, 2007). The selected screening measure(s):academic screening Have ‘technical adequacy’ as grade-level screeners—andmeasure(s) are not in place, thehave been researched and shown to predict future studentschool cannot efficiently identifysuccess in the academic skill(s) targeted.struggling students who need Are general enough to give useful information for at least aadditional intervention supportfull school year of the developing academic skill (e.g.,or calculate the relativeGeneral Outcome Measure or Skill-Based Masteryprobability of academic successMeasure).for each student. Include research norms, proprietary norms developed aspart of a reputable commercial assessment product, orbenchmarks to guide the school in evaluating the risk levelfor each student screened. YESLocal Norms Collected via Gradewide Academic Screenings atIn the absence of regularly NOLeast 3 Times Per Year. All students at each grade level areupdated local screening norms,administered the relevant academic screening measures at leastthe school cannot easily judgethree times per school year. The results are compiled to providewhether a particular student’slocal norms of academic performance.skills are substantially delayedfrom those of peers in the sameeducational setting.ReferencesBurns, M. K., & Gibbons, K. A. (2008). Implementing response-to-intervention in elementary and secondary schools.Routledge: New York.Christ, T. (2008). Best practices in problem analysis. In A. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in schoolpsychology V (pp. 159-176). Bethesda, MD: National Association of School Psychologists.Fuchs, L. (2003). Assessing intervention responsiveness: Conceptual and technical issues. Learning DisabilitiesResearch & Practice, 18(3), 172-186.Gansle, K. A., & Noell, G. H. (2007). The fundamental role of intervention implementation in assessing response tointervention. In S. R. Jimerson, M. K. Burns, & A. M. VanDerHeyden (Eds.), Response to intervention: The science andpractice of assessment and intervention (pp. 244-251). New York: Springer Publishing.

‘How RTI Works’ Series 2013 Jim Wrightwww.interventioncentral.org5Hosp, M. K., Hosp, J. L., & Howell, K. W. (2007). The ABCs of CBM: A practical guide to curriculum-basedmeasurement. New York: Guilford Press.Howell, K. W., Hosp, J. L., & Kurns, S. (2008). Best practices in curriculum-based evaluation. In A. Thomas & J.Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology V (pp.349-362). Bethesda, MD: National Association of SchoolPsychologists.Roach, A. T., & Elliott, S. N. (2008). Best practices in facilitating and evaluating intervention integrity. In A. Thomas & J.Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology V (pp.195-208).Shapiro, E. S. (2008). Best practices in setting progress-monitoring monitoring goals for academic skill improvement. InA. Thomas & J. Grimes (Eds.), Best practices in school psychology V (pp. 141-157). Bethesda, MD: NationalAssociation of School Psychologists.Witt, J. C., VanDerHeyden, A. M., & Gilbertson, D. (2004). Troubleshooting behavioral interventions. A systematicprocess for finding and eliminating problems. School Psychology Review, 33, 363-383.

student (e.g., an intervention to address reading fluency was chosen for a student whose primary deficit was in reading fluency). If the intervention is group-based, all students enrolled in the Tier 2/3 intervention group have a shared intervention need that could reasonably be addressed through the group instruction provided.

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