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Response to Intervention (RtI)


General Overview of RtI
Head Start and RtI
Behavior and RtI
Coordinated Early Intervening Services (CEIS)
Learning Disability (LD) Eligibility
RtI Blueprints

General Overview of RtI

RtI may be described as a model addressing the needs of all students through a continuum of services which provide: (1) high-quality instruction and scientific, researched-based, tiered intervention strategies aligned with individual student need; (2) frequent monitoring of student progress to make results-based academic or behavioral decisions; (3) data-based school improvement; and (4) the application of student response data to important educational decisions (such as those regarding placement, intervention, curriculum, and instructional goals and methodologies).
The activities described above typically occur in the general education setting as schools assist struggling students. Local education agency (LEA) staff coordinate and collaborate in developing a process implementing this framework. More information concerning RtI activities can be accessed through the TEA Division of Curriculum.

Students who are suspected of having a disability should be referred for a full and individual evaluation. States and LEAs have an obligation and requirement under federal law (34 CFR § 300.111 Child Find) to ensure that evaluations of children suspected of having a disability are not delayed or denied because of implementation of an RtI strategy. Clarification of this issue has been provided from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). 


Headstart and RtI

The IDEA does not require, or encourage, an LEA to use an RtI approach prior to referral for evaluation or as a part of determining whether a student enrolled in a Head Start program is eligible for special education and related services. When an LEA receives a referral from a Head Start program, the LEA must begin the evaluation process to determine if the child is a child with a disability. The IDEA and its implementing regulations at 34 CFR §§ 300.301-300.311 delineate the requirements LEAs (not non-LEAs such as other community-based early childhood programs) must use to conduct an initial evaluation to determine if a child qualifies as a child with a disability under Part B. For additional information, see (link to Head Start letter)


Behavior and RtI

RtI may also be used as a tool to address behavioral concerns. The Texas Behavior Support Initiative (TBSI) is a resource designed to build capacity in Texas schools for the provision of positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) to all students. PBIS employs a range of systemic and individualized strategies to achieve social and learning results in order to address problem behavior. For more information, see Positive Behavior Support .


Coordinated Early Intervening Services (CEIS)

A school may choose to fund a campus RtI program using Coordinated Early Intervening Services (CEIS) funds. CEIS funds may be used to provide services to students who are not currently identified as needing special education or related services, but who need additional academic and/or behavior support to succeed in a general education environment in kindergarten through grade 12 (with a particular emphasis on students in kindergarten through grade 3). CEIS funding information may be accessed at Coordinated Early Intervening Services (EIS) Guidance .

RtI Blueprints

The National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) and the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE) believe there is a need for additional publications to help policymakers and implementers focus on the components of a framework or blueprint to guide the implementation of RtI. These documents provide that guidance to assist districts and schools as they strive to establish effective RtI programs. The Texas Education Agency expresses its appreciation to NASDSE for extending permission for the incorporation of additional state and national resources to this state-specific version to support RtI implementation in Texas schools. This document includes current Texas resources in blue.

Response to Intervention Blueprints: District Level Edition Texas Version May, 2010

Response to Intervention Blueprints: School Building Level Edition Texas Version May 2010 


Learning Disability (LD) Eligibility

LEAs may choose to use an RtI process as one of a variety of measures used in evaluating LD eligibility. The use of RtI in determining LD eligibility was included in the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 2004 due to concerns with models of identification of LD that use IQ tests. Additional information regarding the use of RtI in determining LD eligibility is available in a question and answer format from the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). Also, guidance regarding evaluation of LD may be obtained from the following:
Evaluation for Learning Disability (LD) Eligibility Guidance—(New)

State Resources

Statewide Leadership Functions and Projects

Building RtI Capacity

Texas Center for Learning Disabilities

Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association: RTI and SLP Services

National Resources


Division of IDEA Coordination

1701 North Congress Avenue | Austin, Texas 78701-1494

Telephone: 512.463.9414 | Fax: 512.463.9560


Page last modified on 9/10/2014 02:49:06 PM.