RTI is a Great Concept — But The Present Reality is …
Students are Often Caught in The RTI Trap
Need to Help Parents and Students Avoid the RTI Trap
I said we have an unacceptable RTI System at that time, and it is not noticeably better – especially for students with dyslexia and learning disabilities. Too many students are caught in the RTI Trap — through no fault of their own.
It is time for groups like NCLD, LDA (Learning Disabilities Association of America), Decoding Dyslexia, the International Dyslexia Association and others to band together to insist on:
– A predictable process where parents know their child has been flagged for more intensive help, what the help will be and how they will be kept informed
– A system that defines acceptable growth — I have heard school officials say that a student who makes any progress stays in RTI — even though the student may be falling further and further behind his or her peers. RTI could be a life changing experience, or it could be the RTI Trap — where a student is caught in a never ending treadmill.
– A process that recognizes that a student with a really significant gap could and should get Tier 2 and Tier 3 service simultaneously — Tier 2 is often a teacher going into a classroom and giving specialized help and Tier 3 is often a pullout where a student gets even more intensive help. This was a recommendation from Professor Doug Fuchs. Just this week we met at a school in Palm Beach for a student who fit this description and within a day the student went from just receiving Tier 2 to receiving Tier 2 and Tier 3 services, at the same time
. This can work when a Parent Advocate like me is present, but it should happen where appropriate.
– Where the programs and the training match the student’s needs — advocates for dyslexia often argue for an Orton-Gillingham Program (R) that might be right for some students, but there needs to be programs and training that match the needs of the student.
For more information visit The RTI Trap