How effectively are districts implementing RTI?
The greatest challenge districts have in implementing RTI is scaling it across all schools in a district, and being clear that this is the way in which business will be conducted. Then, they must provide the appropriate training and support to school administrators and teachers as they adopt these new strategies and tools. My experience right now is that RTI is very much in a school-by-school adoption process.
What obstacles do districts face in measuring the success of intervention strategies?
One of the major obstacles administrators face is having the technological support available so teachers can collect the kind of data they need to determine student progress. They also need to obtain results in a timely fashion so they can adjust the intervention if necessary.
So, technology is the key?
Yes. In the past, we would collect data over time and study the results at six-week or quarterly intervals. That's a lot of time in the life of a child. So some of these easy-to-implement probes that are becoming available will help the teacher make more timely interventions. It's a whole new way of thinking: the teacher as strategist and data collector and analyst.
Are teachers embracing that role?
I think an increasing number are. Teachers are really driven by success. They want the child to succeed, and they want their strategies to succeed.
Is there a link between the frequency of use of an intervention strategy and student achievement?
I don't know that it's frequency of use--I think it's the fidelity of use of the intervention strategy. …