Response to Intervention (RtI) is an approach that schools use to help all students, including struggling learners. The RtI approach gives Texas students opportunities to learn and work at their grade level. The idea is to help all students be successful.
Students who may have a disability should be referred for a full and individual evaluation for special education services. States and LEAs have an obligation and requirement under federal law (34 CFR § 300.111 Child Find) to see that evaluations of children suspected of having a disability are not delayed or denied because of schools using an RtI strategy. The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) clarified this issue.
The following sections provide more information:
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) does not require or
encourage a school to use an RtI approach before a referral for evaluation. A Head
Start program may refer a student for evaluation to determine if the student is eligible for special education and
related services. When a school receives a referral from a Head Start program,
the school must begin the evaluation process to determine if the child has a disability. The IDEA and its regulations at 34 CFR §§
300.301-300.311 specify the requirements that public schools (not non-LEAs such as
other community-based early childhood programs) must use to conduct an initial
evaluation to determine if a child has a disability under
Part B. For additional information, see Head Start letter.
RtI is also a way to
address behavioral concerns. The Texas Behavior Support Initiative is a
resource designed to build capacity in Texas schools for them to provide positive
behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) to all students. PBIS uses a range
of school-wide and individualized strategies to achieve social and learning
results. Problem behaviors are reduced
and students learn. For more information, see Positive
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. These
students need additional academic or behavior support to succeed in a general
education program in kindergarten through grade 12 (with emphasis on students
in kindergarten through grade 3). See Coordinated Early Intervening Services (EIS) Guidance for CEIS funding information.
The National Association
of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) and the Council of
Administrators of Special Education believe there is a need for
additional guidance to help school administrators focus on the parts of a framework
or blueprint in order to implement RtI. These documents provide that guidance
to assist districts and schools as they establish effective RtI programs. The
Texas Education Agency expresses its appreciation to NASDSE for extending permission
for allowing 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
Schools may choose to
use an RtI process as one of a variety of measures for evaluating students
for learning disability (LD) eligibility. The use of RtI in determining LD eligibility was included
in the reauthorization of the IDEA of 2004 due to concerns with models of LD identification that use IQ tests.
Additional information regarding the use of RtI in determining LD eligibility
is available in a question and answer format from OSEP. In addition, guidance regarding evaluation of LD
may be found at Response to Intervention (RtI) and Learning Disability (LD) Eligibility.
Below are links to state
are links to statewide leadership functions and projects which have information
Institutes of Higher Education
The University of Texas
in Austin and the University of Houston have information about RtI:
are national resources regarding RtI: