The Model of Respond to Intervention (RTI) and Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS)


Several children struggle academically and behaviorally while pursuing their education. Several advocates, organizations and members of the family who identify with education that is specialized have in unison pushed for inclusivity in the past 25 years. The model of Respond to Intervention (RTI) and Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) have been very crucial in reforming the education of children. Vaughn and Fuchs, 2011 state that professionals in curriculum development have made a suggestion that a curriculum that is inclusive of every one is the remedy to the challenges that the schooling going children encounter. Implementation of the RTI/MTSS educational reforms in an environment that is all inclusive is required so that the education, emotional, and social life of these children can improve. In this essay, discussions on various aspects of these educational reforms have been made by discussing: how successful these reforms models have been in serving students at risk and those with disabilities; how convincing the empirical support for and against RTI and MTSS Reform Models successes have been and the major advantages and disadvantages of these reforms.

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Successes of RTI/MTSS reforms models

RTI and MTSS Reform Models are approaches meant to redesign and establish effective, relevant, efficient, and durable environment of learning for every student, educator and family. These models ensure that the process of education matches strategies of instruction, interventions and support to the needs of the students.

The accuracy of establishing Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD) has been improved. This has come about due to the improvements in the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) as a result of adopting the model of determining RTI eligibility. Due to the RTI adoption, significant representation of students with diverse cultures and languages in special education has been achieved.

The RTI model has improved equity in the education system. One of the successes of The RTI model is inclusivity it has created in the education which is school wide. It has also eliminated segregation in the education system. The population of interest as defined by Sailor is those people in whom typical instruction is not effective. These persons competitive efficiency increases the burden of responsibility. However, this burden has been lifted from the victim, and shouldered by the new general curriculum that is all inclusive.

The three-tier RTI model has facilitated equitable distribution of resource of education. Schools have taken several reforms to better performance in education sector. One of the benefits that have come along with this is the equitable distribution of resources of learning. The general curriculum has ensured that all students make effective achievements. These achievements started being realized once the shift from schools that are organized traditionally was done. The various researches that have been made on special education have produced practices based on evidence. MTSS and RTI provide additional support to students which have enabled them to efficiently benefit from evidence-based practices. The process of having multi-tiered special concept of education embedded in the broader systemic framework of school wide applications has produced positive interventions in behavior resulting in improvement in the persons for whom typical instruction is not effective.

Support for and against RTI and MTSS

Significant contributions in assessing and diagnosing persons having disabilities in learning support effectiveness of these models. These contributions have been made for the past 25 years. They have made an establishment of the legacy used in the design, implementation and evaluation of efficacy of measures that are curriculum based, which finally lead to the design of RTI models. It is these contributions that established the legacy of designing, implementing, and evaluating the efficacy of curriculum-based measures, which would eventually lead to the designing of RTI models. Curriculum based measures have been crucial in monitoring and screening the progress of students and historical analysis support implementation of RTI.

RTI model assists students with disabilities in learning. The failure of a student to learn from the instructions or academic interventions that vast majority of students find effective is evidence enough that such a student requires exceptional and special program of education since he or she has a unique challenge. The three-tier RTI /MTSS model is strategically in position to identify and address issues of students with disabilities in learning and meeting whatever they require without segregating them. RTI models provide a conceptual pathway out of class that is inclusive, wide based and without segregation in education.

RTI model motivate the emotions and socialization of children. The inclusions of children with disabilities in studies and classes that are general enable them to feel motivated. These children have boosted self-esteem, better quality in making friends and being accepted. Children in settings of inclusion do develop self-perception of social acceptance that is of healthy nature and averagely they do have more friends in reciprocal. Studies making an examination of the perception of students with regards to the settings of their education, made a revelation that those children with LD preferred inclusion classroom to settings of resource rooms. Reason is that the inclusion schools were better in helping making friends.

However, RTI models require adequate professional development agenda. This is needed to ensure its wide scale implementation. Numerous researches are still needed in supplementing the currently existing knowledge with connection to the inter-operability of RTI critical elements and the effects of RTI on children living with disability. Professionals in curriculum development need to emphasize on the need for additional research on screening class wide instruction, monitoring the progress of CBM and interventions needed to make improvements in the understanding of RTI/ MTSS.

Additionally, support against RTI model three tiers is its inefficiency in addressing problems of some children with disabilities in learning. Some students with disabilities in learning who do not pass tier one or two get frustrated and develop avoidance behaviors and negative emotions. A finding was made by Greulich in 2014, that certain students do require additional interventions as they inadequately responds to three-tier models and to some extent tie-three model. The results from these findings make a confirmation that even though some students benefit much from the three-tier model of education, there is a group of students with disabilities in learning who the RTI model does not benefit. This necessitates the need for development of a more robust model of RTI through further research. This robust RTI model will make sure that all students having disabilities with learning benefit from the inclusion settings, in general, classrooms.

Major Advantages and Disadvantages of RTI

One major advantage of RTI is that it boosts a healthy social and emotional self-perception. A child with disabilities in learning requires a healthy self-perception to aid their self-esteem both within and outside the classroom setting. The RTI and model of inclusion helps these students with disabilities to view themselves as people for whom typical instruction is not effective and not as disabled students. When students view themselves this way, their burden is lifted enormously from them and placed on the general curriculum. The curriculum therefore has the duty of absorbing these students into the system through the creation of robust models such as the RTI three-tier model.

A major disadvantage to the RTI model is its inadequate response to learning of some students. Research show that some students with disabilities in learning, do find the three-tier RTI model inefficient. Some students do display inadequate response in learning even after they have passed through the RTI model. Studies show that students having disabilities in learning that have been enrolled in inclusion curriculum have perceptions that are negative once they fail in responding appropriately to the three-tier RTI model. Additionally, there exists inadequate research in class-wide instruction, screening, CBM progress monitoring together with interventions as critical elements of RTI and how they personally affect students with learning disabilities.

In conclusion, from the discussion, it is clear that RTI model assists students having disabilities to view themselves with positive perception. The benefits of these models are very instrumental in reforming the education sector. However, additionally research is needed for every stakeholder in the education system to benefit from RTI model. Once this is done then the RTI model will definitely be a perfect solution as an education reform.

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