Based on the response-to-intervention model, Responsive Instruction is a comprehensive assessment and intervention process that uses learning rate over time and level of performance to inform educational decisions while instruction is occurring. It provides a framework by which students are provided high-quality instruction and intervention matched to their individual instructional needs in order to ensure academic growth.
RI is a variation of the scientific method used to solve educational problems that dates back to the early 1980s, commonly referred to as ‘Response to Intervention’ (RTI). RTI was originally proposed as a method of identification of learning disabilities (see National Research Council report by Heller, Holtzman, & Messick, 1982). Extensive research during the 1990s supported the benefits of RTI and gave rise to a change in public policy regarding the assessment and classification of students with learning disabilities. In 2004, the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act required states to permit the use of an RTI framework based on the child’s response to scientific, research-based intervention.
In 2010, Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) expanded the RTI framework to support ALL students, not just those with academic difficulties, hence the name change to Responsive Instruction. LCPS has adopted a six strand model of intervention to include the areas of reading, writing, math, behavior, motor, and language development. This initiative is being maintained through a collaboration of resources between the Department of Instruction and the Department of Pupil Services.
RI provides an opportunity for ALL students to grow academically. There is enhanced communication between home and school. Students and parents are active participants with monitoring student progress.