Closing the gap between teacher perception and Response to Intervention (RTI) student achievement

Melissa A. Hyatt Boucher


Many communities rely on public schools to educate and properly train students who become the future members of society. So with educational groundwork constantly changing, districts are charged with excelling in various areas like Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) and Quality of Distribution Index (QDI). One area within that concern focuses on student behavior prevention programs by improving student achievement and increasing state test scores. Educational leaders reexamine teacher qualifications, rigor and relevance in classroom instruction, class size reduction, and providing effective professional development sessions aligning in accordance to each school's vision and goals. The purpose of this study was to examine student achievement through state test scores and whether there was a correlation to Response to Intervention (RTI). The researcher investigated the many aspects to RTI and compared them to their districts' state test scores for 7th graders in 2010 and 8th graders in 2011. In addition to RTI, questions were asked regarding important teacher qualities to making the intervention successful and if RTI decreased their dropout rate. Qualitative data collected for the research of this study were referenced state scores from the Mississippi State Department of Education and compared to participating respondents' perceptions of his or her behavior prevention program. All data was then keyed into SPSS to analyze whether or not a relationship existed between the two focus areas. The results of the study determined that there was no significant difference in any of the school district who utilizes RTI when compared to student achievement through state test scores despite the high percentage of RTI Specialists' perceptions.