Dear Families,

“Response to Intervention” or RtI…What is it?

The term “Response to Intervention” refers to the process by which we as a school team assess where students are, identify areas that students may be struggling with and develop a plan to assist the students in gaining specific skills and strategies that will help them be successful in reaching grade level standards.


There are three distinct parts of this process including universal screening or the assessment (or review of data) for every student at a grade level, progress monitoring, and research-based instruction.


Though the RtI models vary from district to district, it is usually defined as a three-tier approach where “Tier 1” corresponds to the high-quality instruction that happens in the classroom that will meet the needs for 80-85% of the students in the classroom. “Tier 2” refers to the need for a small percentage of students whose assessments indicate a lag in concepts or skills. This 10-15% of the students in a given classroom may require additional targeted instruction for a short period of time to learn those concepts and skills and can then once again be on a positive track towards meeting grade level expectations. Within “Tier 2”, students may be working with a math specialist or literacy specialist to receive the short-term interventions. This instruction is in addition to classroom instruction, not a substitution for classroom instruction. “Tier 3” addresses the needs of approximately 5% of students whose assessments indicate that there are greater lapses in progress or skill development ( a grade level or more) and more intensive interventions are employed.


Early in the fall, there are literacy and math assessments that are administered in order for us to gather important data about students’ current level of performance and to determine what interventions might be necessary. You may recall that teachers use the Benchmark Assessment System (BAS) to assess reading. For Math, students take the “Beginning of the Year” (BOYA) assessment in the elementary grades and this year, Runkle is also piloting iReady, an online screening tool, in grades 4 and 6 to get additional information about students’ strengths and relative weaknesses. These results along with additional assessment data are then used to make decisions about which students will require short-term interventions to assist them in gaining the specific concepts and skills they need to continue to progress. For reading, we use the Leveled Literacy Intervention (LLI) and for Math, we are using Marilyn Burns “Do the Math” modules in addition to other research-based programs and approaches as needed.

As a school, we are continually assessing student progress (either formally or informally), identifying where interventions are needed, monitor and track student progress over time and are continually reflecting about what is working for our students.

Upcoming Events…

First Meeting of the Runkle School Council

This Wednesday, October 8th at 4:00 p.m. we will hold the first meeting of the year with the Runkle School Council. This meeting is open to the public and will be held in the Library. The agendas are posted at least 48 hours in advance on the Town Calendar and are posted in the Town Clerk’s office as well as being listed on our website.

CAR-FREE Day! October 8th!

Join us in celebration of the International Walk to School Day! Leave your car at home and walk, take the T, ride a bike or scooter, or even jog or skip to school that morning!

IPR – Interim Progress Reports (Grades 6-8)

This Friday, students will be bringing home their IPRs. Please be looking for them as it marks how your child is progressing at the mid-point of the first term. If you do not receive it on Friday, please follow up with Jim Stoddard or myself and we will print another copy for you. For IPRs, parents will see whether their student is making “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory” progress so far. In addition to marking the academic progress, effort and behavior are marked on a four-point scale that indicates that students are meeting teachers’ expectations:

1 = Consistently

2 = Usually

3 = Sometimes

4 = Rarely

Having conversations with your child now about how they are doing in class and developing some short-term goals together will go a long way to helping your child be successful this year.



Vanessa C. Beauchaine, Ed.D.


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