In October of 2015, the Arkansas Dept. of Education (ADE) was awarded the State Personnel Development Grant (SPDG.) From the AR SPDG website: “The SPDG will directly support the ADE State Systemic Improvement Plan targeted districts and build upon the Response-to-Intervention (RTI) Arkansas initiative, which is a multi-component, general education model designed to identify students who may be at risk academically or behaviorally, offer support, and monitor progress. The five-year grant will be used to develop RTI literacy and behavior resources and tools, including professional development and technical assistance, that educational cooperatives, districts, and schools can utilize to assist all students, especially students with disabilities.”
The Center for Community Engagement was a main partner in the grant and provided training and support for Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) to targeted school districts in Arkansas. The American Institutes for Research (AIR) was also a main partner in the grant and provided training and support for RTI in Literacy. The third main partner was the Parent Training and Information Center (part of the Center for Exceptional Families), which provided support and information for parents about their role in supporting their children.
From the AIR website: “RTI is a process intended to help educators identify students who are not performing academically at the same rate as most of their peers. RTI can help teachers increase the achievement levels of struggling students by monitoring their progress, and then making data-based instructional decisions based on the level of progress. By providing information about how a child responds to scientifically based interventions, RTI enables teachers to adjust the intensity and/or frequency of the interventions they use.”