Alternatives to RTI by yx0ASuy

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									                               Alternatives to RTI
                                      Tom Scruggs
                                 George Mason University

Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium
December 4-5, 2003 • Kansas City, Missouri

The National Research Center on Learning Disabilities, a collaborative project of staff at Vanderbilt University and the University of
Kansas, sponsored this two-day symposium focusing on responsiveness-to-intervention (RTI) issues.

The symposium was made possible by the support of the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs. Renee
Bradley, Project Officer. Opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the position of the U.S.
Department of Education.

When citing materials presented during the symposium, please use the following: “Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI.
          Scruggs, T. (2003, Research Center on Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City,
Paper presented at the NationalDecember). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
MO.”      Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                                                         1
Strengths of RTI
    Emphasizes an important deficit area of
     LD (reading); potential for other areas
    Emphasizes early identification,
     intervention
    Expectation of evidence-based, high-
     quality instruction as a baseline, to
     eliminate “teaching disabilities”


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        2
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Does RTI preserve contemporary
     conceptualizations of LD?
       Unexpected low achievement relative to
        aptitude or ability
       Intra-individual differences
       Presumed processing deficit
       Average or above intelligence
       Multifaceted in nature
       Patterns of relative strengths and
        weaknesses
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        3
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Does RTI effectively discriminate
     between, e.g., LD, MR, E/BD, ADHD,
     generic low achievement?
          Students in each of these areas may not
           respond to intervention, but for different
           reasons
          If RTI can not discriminate, how can it
           classify?
          Important to maintain categories to maintain
           advocacy, research, funding, legislation.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        4
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Can RTI be used effectively to address
     the multifaceted nature of LD?
          Math concepts/computation, reading
           decoding/comprehension, writing, spelling; or
           memory, attention, study/organizational skills
          Or, if reading inadequacy is presumed to be
           the fundamental characteristic of LD, does
           this suggest it is the only characteristic? (i.e.,
           success in phonemic awareness = success in
           school?)
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        5
Is it true?
 LD = severe reading problems
 Severe reading problems can be
  identified and corrected in primary
  grades
 Correcting reading problems in
  primary grades can eliminate LD


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        6
OR,
    LD is a disorder in one or more of the
     basic psychological processes, of which
     reading problems are the most apparent
     manifestation.
    Intensive instruction can improve reading
     skills, but this does not “cure” the
     learning disability, which may have a
     number of other manifestations (e.g.,
     sustained attention, semantic memory,
     organizational skills, social interactions)
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        7
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Can RTI be used across the age
     spectrum to identify LD?
       Preschool
       Primary grades

       Elementary grades

       Middle school

       High school


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        8
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Can RTI be implemented with
     technical adequacy?
       Standardized implementation of
        evidence-based instruction?
       Standardized CBM?
       Standardized remedial procedures?
       Justifiable cut-points in level and slope
        for each content area at each grade
        level?
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        9
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    Will RTI improve present
     identification procedures?
       Reduce variability?
       Reduce overidentification?

       Improve early identification?

       Improve or maintain level of
        representation by ethnic or racial
        groups
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        10
Problems of RTI in
Identification of LD
    At present, insufficient research
     evidence:
       to establish cut-points for levels of
        intervention or identification,
        applications beyond early reading.
       to determine impact of wide
        implementation of RTI for LD
        identification.
       To determine response of general
        education to RTI.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        11
What are alternatives?
 RTI describes appropriate
  procedures for addressing reading
  problems in general ed.
 Is RTI better suited for identification
  of LD, or as an early reading
  program for general ed?


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        12
Let us assume…
   RTI-type (evidence-based) intervention is
    implemented, but as an early reading
    intervention in general ed classrooms
    (unstandardized-may differ):
       All students receive high-quality reading
        instruction
       Students with early reading problems receive
        more intensive instruction in small groups
       If this program is successful, referrals will
        decrease, and only “truly” LD will be identified.
       General ed. (not special ed) pays for these
        services.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        13
How then is LD identified?
     Definition: Disorder in one or more of the
      basic psychological processes involved in
      understanding or using language, spoken
      or written, which may manifest itself in
      an imperfect ability to listen, think,
      speak, read, write, spell, or to do
      mathematical calculations.
     NOT (exclusion): result of visual, hearing
      or motor handicaps, MR, ED, or
      environmental, cultural, or economic
      disadvantage.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        14
LD then is achievement
deficits not explained by:
 Low vision
 Hearing impairments
 Physical disabilities
 Mental retardation
 Environmental, cultural, or economic
  disadvantage
 Insufficient opportunity to learn
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        15
Appropriate services
Low vision                                                    Special education


Hearing impairments                                           Special education


Physical disabilities                                         Special education


Mental retardation                                            Special education


Env./cultural/ econ. Disadvantage                             Title 1, ESL services


Insufficient opportunity to learn                             “RTI” program ensures
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        16
Do we operationalize
discrepancies?
 For vision, hearing, physical,
  environmental, opportunity, typically
  viewed as a dichotomy (e.g.,
  adequate/inadequate)
 For intelligence, a dichotomy or
  continuum?


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        17
How to apply exclusionary
criteria for IQ?
1.       Intelligence adequate/inadequate,
         e.g., > or = 80.
2.       Discrepancy (e.g., 1, 1.5, 2 SD)
         between IQ and achievement.




Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        18
Vaughn, Linan-Thompson,
& Hickman, 2003
 “Students with LD could be
  identified on the basis of low
  achievement, application of the
  exclusionary criteria, and then
  response to intervention.”
 With RTI services implemented in
  general ed as a supplemental
  service, all students would have had
  this.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        19
Problem with cut-off
    Might misidentify students who are
     generally low achievers.
    Might increase overidentification
    Might not conform to conceptualization of
     “unexpected underachievement” (e.g., IQ
     = 80, reading = 85)
    Might remove from consideration
     students with low IQ who nevertheless
     are performing below expectations.

Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        20
Something to avoid:

       “When the discrepancy formula
     disappears from the educational
     scene, so will the concept of LD….
     we are beginning to get a glimpse of
     the promised land” (Aaron, 1997, p.
     489).

Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        21
Alternative to RTI in LD
identification
1.      Implement “RTI”-type reading interventions in general
        education
      a)   To assure high-quality instruction
      b)   To provide alternatives to special education
           placement
2.      Enforce strict requirements and criteria for LD
        identification
      a)   Very low achievement
      b)   Discrepancy with IQ, sensory/physical functioning,
           opportunities to learn
      c)   Encourage early identification
      d)   Team decision but supported by evidence


Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        22
Advantages
    Maintains concept of disability, i.e., within
     student, long-term or lifelong,
     unexpected underachievement
    Operationalized to reduce
     overidentification and variability from
     subjectivity
    “RTI” services maintain emphasis on
     high-quality, evidence-based practice;
     provides an alternative to special
     education.
Scruggs, T. (2003, December). Alternatives to RTI. Paper presented at the National Research Center on
Learning Disabilities Responsiveness-to-Intervention Symposium, Kansas City, MO.
                                                                                                        23

								
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