March 2015

When IDEA 2004 was reauthorized RTI was given a much larger role than previously with regard to identifying children with learning disabilities. An incredible amount of resources are dedicated to special education each year with a fair amount going to identifying and testing children for specific learning disabilities but the hope is that RTI will help to alleviate this problem.


RTI is divided into a three tier system; tier one is regular classroom instruction, tier two is designed to help students struggling with the traditional instruction and tier three would be classified as traditional special education services. 

Traditionally in order to qualify for special education a student has had to “fail” in order to qualify for services. Think about it, a teacher or parent may sense there is a problem with Billy whether it is the way he learns or the progress he is making but as long as he makes “effective” progress he would not qualify for special ed. services until he actually fails to make progress. You can quickly see that this would become very aggravating as a parent or educator if you recognize a problem but can’t do anything about it. 

Quite a few school districts are still coming to grips with RTI since it is a relatively new concept. As I understand RTI this three-tier process would allow educators to focus more on education rather than testing and diagnosis. If done correctly this could be a good thing since all students do not learn the same way at the same time. If an at risk student is not grasping a concept the teacher or classroom aide can adjust the lesson and monitor the student’s progress. If after an adequate monitoring process the student still is not grasping the concept in question only then will the student be referred for further special ed. testing. This has the potential to save a lot of money and reallocate much needed resources but with caution.

At BSEA we believe that enlisting the right kind of help early in your child's special education process will lower costs, maintain a positive relationship between parents and the school district and enrich interaction between your child and their school.

It is not about confrontation it is about as a parent getting one opportunity to get you child the services and education they need and deserve.

When IDEA 2004 was reauthorized RTI was given a much larger role than previously with regard to identifying children with learning disabilities. An incredible amount of resources are dedicated to special education each year with a fair amount going to identifying and testing children for specific learning disabilities but the hope is that RTI will help to alleviate this problem.   To read the full article click​ on the ARTICLES/LINKS page.

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- BK

 

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Baystate Special Education Advocacy

Littleton MA 01460

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