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Response to Intervention KnowledgeBase

This KnowledgeBase archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.

The Response to Intervention KnowledgeBase is an online resource supporting educators in understanding and implementing the response to intervention (RTI) model. The National Implementation Research Network (NIRN) has identified four stages in the implementation of evidence-based strategies such as RTI. The first stage is Exploration, and it involves consideration of the essential components of RTI models and the district or school's readiness to implement an RTI model with fidelity. During the second stage, Installation, a district or school selects an RTI model and works actively to put in place all of the supports necessary for implementing the essential components. These supports can include staff member training, policies, implementation guides, forms, assessments, instructional programs, and software. The third stage is Initial Implementation, and it involves implementing the essential components. Initial Implementation can involve just a few components or teachers, and then implementation expands over time. When the majority of teachers are implementing all components of RTI with fidelity, the district or school is in the fourth stage, called Full Implementation. This KnowledgeBase is geared primarily toward those in the Exploration and Installation stages, with some resources for those in the Initial Implementation stage.

Task 3: Examine Positive Behavior Supports

Guideline: Positive behavior supports are designed to assist students struggling behaviorally. Effective response to intervention (RTI) models address student academic needs as well as behavioral issues. Behavioral supports are designed to prevent inappropriate behavior through the teaching and reinforcing of appropriate behaviors. There are several acronyms used in education to describe the behavioral side of RTI; Positive Behavior Supports (PBS), Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), and School Wide Positive Behavior Supports (SWPBS). This task provides resources on how to provide students with systematic positive behavioral interventions for individual student needs to improve student behavior in the classroom.


Using A Response to Intervention (RTI) Framework to Improve Student Learning

This pocket guide explains how leaders can use a research-based framework for response to intervention (RTI) to improve learning for all students. The majority of states have some form of RTI initiative in place already. This guide can help states leverage existing initiatives to support the statewide school improvement efforts spelled out in their ESEA flexibility plans. Using a RTI Framework to Improve Student Learning is designed to help state and local policymakers and practitioners implement ESEA flexibility plans. The Pocket Guide includes:

  • A description of the essential components of RTI;
  • Requirements for Principle 2 in the application for building state, district, and school capacity to improve learning in all schools—particularly low-performing schools and those with the largest achievement gaps;
  • Discussion of how applications of a research-based RTI framework address Principle 2 in approved plans; and
  • Considerations (based on rigorous research) for the implementation of RTI frameworks to address the proposed reforms.

Why is Collaborative Teaming a Key Element of PBS?

Positive Behavior Support (PBS) begins by building a behavior support team of key individuals and stakeholders who are most involved in the child’s life. Team members collaborate in multiple ways in order to develop, implement, and monitor a child’s support plan. The collaborative process of PBS includes the following steps: (1) WHO are the key stakeholders and individuals in this child’s life? (2) WHY is collaborative teaming a key element of PBS for this child? (3) WHAT do we need to do to make this a successful collaborative experience that will benefit the child and family? (4) HOW are we going to promote the active participation of the family and all team members in the behavior support planning process? (5) WHO are the key stakeholders and individuals in this child’s life?   Parents and family are absolutely essential to the PBS teaming process. The goal is to create a team that represents all of the adults who will interact with the child in the natural environment.

Collaborative teaming is based on the idea that all team members have contributions to the development, implementation, and monitoring of a behavior support plan. When the family is a part of the process from the beginning, and are encouraged to participate in the PBS process from functional assessment to plan implementation, they are more likely to “buy in” to the support plan and implement the plan with fidelity.

Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports

This link is to the U.S. Department of Education's OSEP Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports. The center provides capacity-building information and technical assistance for effective school-wide disciplinary practices.

Response to Intervention and Positive Behavior Support: Brothers from Different Mothers or Sisters from Different Misters

This link to the University of South Florida's Child and Family Studies website offers a brief discussing the similarities and differences between RTI and positive behavior support.

School-Wide Positive Behavior Support and Response to Intervention

Authored by the University of Connecticut's Dr. George Sugai, this article discusses the relationship between positive behavior support and RTI.

The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education and are intended for general reference purposes only. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education or the Center, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. Some resources on this site require Adobe Acrobat Reader. This website archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.