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Adoption Date: 02/04/2013  Revised: 11/01/2016 
6170R Pre-Referral Interventions

School-Wide Pre-referral Approaches and Interventions - Regulation

In accordance with regulations of the Commissioner of Education, the District offers the following school-wide pre-referral interventions to ensure that all eligible students receive programs and services to assist a student’s educational process before consideration of referral to the Committee on Special Education (CSE).

1.  Response to Intervention (RTI)

Response to Intervention (RTI) is a multi-tiered, problem-solving approach that identifies general education students struggling in academic areas early and provides the students with systematically applied strategies and targeted instruction, and behavioral interventions at varying levels of intervention.

In accordance with the District’s RTI Plan, kindergarten through grade 5 students will receive appropriate classroom instruction and/or targeted interventions in reading/literacy and/or mathematics and grades 6 through 12 students will receive such instruction and interventions in English/Reading and/or mathematics, in general education before the District considers a request for referral to the CSE for an evaluation of a student with a suspected educational disability.

Such procedures shall include, as part of its general education program, a process referred to as Response to Intervention. The basic components of the RTI process shall include:

  • Scientific, research-based core instruction in reading/literacy. Reading and literacy instruction shall address phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, fluency and comprehension;
  • Screening for all students in at least three (3) times per year to identify those students who are not making academic progress at the expected rates;
  • Research-based interventions matched to the student's targeted need at increasing levels of intensity for those students who do not make satisfactory progress in their levels of performance and/or in their rate of learning to meet age or grade level standards;
  • Repeated assessments of targeted skill areas using curriculum-based measures to determine if interventions are resulting in student progress toward age or grade level standards;
  • A building-based team to establish at-risk criteria, review screening data, and make decisions related to student performance and the need for intervention in academic and/or behavioral areas; and
  • Written notice to the parents when the student requires an intervention beyond that provided to students in the general education classroom that provides information about the need for intervention.

Structure of Response to Intervention Program

Kindergarten through grade 5, District-wide, will utilize a three-tiered model to determine interventions specific to their population.

Tier 1 – Universal Interventions – All students have access to Tier 1 interventions.  These interventions are delivered by teachers, within classrooms or throughout the school, and consist of whole-group or individual strategies and supports.  It is an ongoing process of developing strong classroom instructional practices to reach the largest number of struggling learners.  Tier 1 interventions encompass the school’s core curriculum, all published or teacher-made materials used to deliver that curriculum, and teacher use of whole group teaching and management strategies.

Tier 2 – Individualized Interventions – These interventions are evidence-based and typically given as small group supplemental instruction.  These interventions are in addition to, and not in place of, the core instruction provided in Tier 1.  Tier 2 interventions focus on the areas of student need or weakness that are identified in the screenings.  Progress is monitored at least two times per month.

Tier 3 – Intensive Interventions – Students who do not respond to Tier 1 and Tier 2 interventions or continue to have a large skill gap when compared to their class or grade peers are referred to the RTI team for more intensive interventions (e.g., longer duration, smaller group size, more frequent progress monitoring and greater focus) in addition to core instruction.  Tier 3 interventions provide greater individualized instruction in a small group setting.  Progress is monitored at least once per week.   

Building teams comprised of any or all of the following: teachers (general and/or special education), school psychologist, speech therapist, reading specialist and building administrator, shall convene to conduct the following tasks:

  1. Identify interventions appropriate for each level of the tiered model and criteria for movement in and out of each level;
  2. Review and analyze data collected pursuant to this policy;
  3. Make decisions regarding the appropriateness of the interventions used and the grouping of students to maximize effectiveness;
  4. Recommend changes in students' instructional programs and/or behavior plan based upon the analysis of the data; and
  5. Determine whether students are making progress and when, or if a referral to the CSE is appropriate.

Professional Staff Development

Staff assigned to provide students with research-based literacy/reading interventions and/or assessment of the District’s RTI program shall receive training on the specific intervention techniques and fidelity of implementation as well as assessment administration, data collection and charting of performance data.

2.  Academic Intervention Services (AIS)

Academic Intervention Services (AIS) will be provided to kindergarten through grade 12 students at risk of not meeting the New York State learning standards in Mathematics or English Language Arts (ELA).Eligibility for AIS is determined based upon a student’s performance on state assessments and/or in accordance with uniformly applied District-developed and adopted procedures.Eligible students will receive services consistent with law and regulations.AIS must commence no later than the beginning of the semester following a determination that a student is eligible for such services.

  • The Building Principal or designee will notify the parents of a student determined to be in need of AIS, in writing, upon the commencement of such services.The notification shall include a summary of the services to be provided, the reason the student needs the services and the consequences of not achieving at the expected performance level.
  • The Building Principal or designee will notify the parents, in writing, when AIS are no longer needed.The notification will include the criteria for ending services and the performance levels obtained on District selected assessments, if appropriate.
  • The School will provide ongoing communication with parents, which must include opportunities to consult with teachers and other professional staff, regular reports on the student’s progress and information on ways to monitor and work with educators to improve the student’s performance.

The Superintendent of Schools or designee, in consultation with each Building Principal, will maintain a description of AIS and/or student support services for each school, including:

  • AIS and/or support services to be provided;
  • Whether additional services will be provided; and
  • Criteria for ending services including, if appropriate, performance levels that students must obtain on District-selected assessments.

The District will utilize a two-step process to identify students for consideration to receive AIS:

  1. All students performing below the median scale score between a Level 2/partially proficient and a Level 3 proficient on a Grades 3-8 ELA or Mathematics state assessment shall be considered for AIS. (Tier 2/Tier 3)
  2. Upon identification of a student for consideration for AIS, the District will use at least one of the following District-developed local measures, to be applied uniformly at each grade level, to determine which students shall receive AIS. (Tier 2/Tier 3)

    • STAR Early Literacy (Grades K-1)
    • STAR Reading and Math (Grades 2-8)
    • Current Grade Point Average in ELA or Mathematics (Grades 5-8)
    • Current Grade in ELA/Mathematics (Grades K-4)

After the District considers a student’s scores on multiple measures of student performance, the District will determine whether the student is required to receive AIS. (Tier 2 or Tier 3 or both)

The District’s AIS Plan shall be reviewed at least every two years, and revised as needed.