Operating RTI

When a classroom, school or district has made the decision to develop and use an RtI framework to improve academic achievement, it commits to maintaining a constant focus on these three areas:

  • High quality instruction – Rigorous, culturally relevant instruction that responds to individual differences in a learning community/classroom.  
  • Balanced Assessment for the continuous review of student progress – Balanced, systematic processes for determining where students are at, how they are responding to curricula and additional support.
  • Collaboration – Educators, parents and students working together to discuss and plan improvement efforts.

Committing to these principles and sustaining that commitment requires constant focus.  Sustaining that focus requires commitment from educators and leadership.  Many schools and districts name internal coaches to help champion RtI-related efforts.  Additionally, schools and districts will make other investments as well to support RtI initiatives – in technology, training and time for educators to collaborate. Investments for schools and districts will vary, based on where they are today and what they need to achieve. 

To help schools and districts start the conversation for operating under an RtI framework, the Wisconsin RtI Center has developed the Leadership Readiness InventoryThis tool provides information around the critical elements a school needs in order to implement the Wisconsin RtI framework with fidelity.  

To help schools and districts start planning for implementation of an RtI framework, the Wisconsin RtI Center has also developed the Wisconsin RtI School-wide Implementation Review.

You commit to developing a shared vision for expected knowledge, skills and dispositions of all students.

Here are some examples of success that you can use in operating your RtI framework: 

  • Have you included families as part of the discussion regarding curricular decisions?  
  • Do educators communicate and collaborate on shared universal curricular decisions?  
  • Have expectations for positive behavior been implemented?

You commit to using a rich mix of data to help students learn. 

Here are some examples of success that you can use in operating your RtI framework: 

  • Do educators know the kinds of assessments that are used and the data that result?  
  • Do educators, students and families understand the relationship between assessments, instruction and programming?  
  • Has your school accessed tools to assist assessing where students are at?
  • Has your school developed tools to assist in the data collection process?  
  • Is there a system for collecting and sharing data in partnership with students and their families?

You commit to collaboration. 

Here are some examples of success that you can use in operating your RtI framework:

  • Has your entire staff worked together to build a vision for RtI, based on the guiding principles?
  • Is leadership for building the RtI infrastructure shared?
  • Is professional development designed and implemented collaboratively?
  • Does your RtI system include multiple opportunities for family contact?

Operating under an RtI model is a substantial commitment – one that can produce results for students, families and educators.  For additional resources to help you operate an RtI framework in your school or district, please visit the RtI section of DPI’s website.


Webinar: RTI and Instructional Coaching: An Overview, via the National Center on RtI

This webinar provides an overview of the development and evaluation of a model for providing onsite professional learning.
Watch the Webinar here.