Response to Intervention

by PammyMcB


This video was made to inform people of the difference between a child who may have a learning disability and a child that may be just a little behind. The videos approach was from an advocate’s standpoint. It focused on how important reading skills are, and how children who do not develop proper reading skills from an early age will remain to be behind throughout their education. The video explained the laws and how they affect those who are learning disabled.

Essential Points

I feel that importance of reading skills is a major point from the video. A child’s reading skills are very important. Children who do not develop effective reading skills by second grade may have difficulty reading throughout their education. This is why early intervention is so important to a child’s education. To teach children to read we must use the five building blocks of construction: phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension. Children who fail to reach these goals may be learning disabled.

The ineffectiveness of the discrepancy model is another main point from the video. In the past, states used the discrepancy model to determine whether or not a child was learning disabled. This method was ineffective for a few reasons. First, the intelligence quotient tests that were given were culturally biased. Children of minority groups were usually labeled as mentally retarded, because they did not do well on the exams. Next, many children with high intelligence quotients may be learning disabled, but not recognized. Last, evaluation teams had to find a great discrepancy between intelligence and achievement in one of six areas: oral expression, listening comprehension, written expression, basic reading skills, reading comprehension, mathematical calculation / reasoning. The ineffectiveness of discrepancy models has led to the banning of its use throughout the United States.

Another main point is how NCLB and IDEIA work together. In 2004, the United States Congress made a law that defined the criteria for determining the eligibility of children with learning disabilities. This was the first time he federal government mandated the criteria. No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) work together to ensure that all children with learning disabilities receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). The way that these laws are able to work together that they share several common elements. One element is accountability for all students. Each student will be tested, even children receiving special education, within their grade level. Another element is that highly qualified teachers will teach all students. This, too, includes students receiving special education services. Yet another element is the laws recognize that all children, even those with learning disabilities are capable of learning. Finally, another element of NCLB and IDEIA is making sure that all students achieve at their expected levels regardless of their race. In areas that the majority of the students are part of a minority group fifteen percent of the school’s budget must be filtered into early childhood intervention programs.

I also felt that determining learning disability eligibility was an important point in the video. Before educators can determine which student is classified as learning disabled. By law a child is considered to be learning disabled if he or she has a disorder that prohibits their use of language skills, audio processing skills, fine motor skills, and problem solving skills. This does not include children with “…visual, hearing, or motor handicaps, mental retardation, or emotional disturbance, or of environmental, cultural or economic disadvantage…,” or children who have not received a proper education. Instruction for children with learning disabilities must be based on the “…child’s response to scientific, research based interventions…,” or may use other “research based procedures” in order to discover what learning disability the child has. Once the learning disability has been discovered, the child’s special education and instruction can be planned and implemented. Children with learning disabilities must be assessed at least three times a year in order to see if the child is progressing.

The final main point is how Response To Intervention (RTI) works. Every child must receive a high quality classroom instruction. RTI assumes that all children are receiving at least ninety minutes of reading instruction, as well as ample math and science, and highly qualified teachers. The structure is differentiated in classroom to meet a broad range of needs and core reading programs are used. Children must receive universal screening to identify level of proficiency for student in both group and individual performance. Early intervention and research-based intervention should be used to make provisions early treatment strategies. Also the student should be monitored during interventions and instruction is to be fine-tuned based on student response to intervention in more substantial blocks of time. The schools must use the 3-tier model for those who are not progressing at an expected rate, before they are referred to special education. On the tier 1 level, the child gets four to six of intervention. If the child passes, they are reintegrated into the classroom. If the child fails, tier 2 is applied. On this level the child should get eight to ten weeks of intervention. If the child passes, they are reintegrated. If the child fails, the child enters tier 3, which is a referral to special education. At this level, additional testing may or may not be necessary.

Summary Reaction

I feel this video was helpful in teaching me more about learning disabilities. It made me realize how important early intervention is for a student, especially one who is considered learning disabled. The video also taught me how NCLB and IDEIA work with one another. I feel this is very important for any teacher to learn, because the laws have made it where special education is more of the general education teacher’s responsibility. I found it interesting that the video said that we should think of all children as general education first.


I will use what I learned from this video to help children who are disabled. I will also be able to use this information to help my son with his education. From this video, I have learned that I will have to make sure every student in my classroom receives a high quality education. I must understand that my lesson plans must be flexible in order to suit the needs for students with learning disabilities. It will be my responsibility to watch for inconsistencies in students’ progress and decide if a student may need intervention according to the three-tier model.