SENATE, No. 2189

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

215th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED OCTOBER 25, 2012

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  M. TERESA RUIZ

District 29 (Essex)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Senator Pennacchio

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Establishes Response to Intervention initiative in DOE to support and encourage school districts in implementation of Response to Intervention framework.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

 


An Act concerning the implementation of a Response to Intervention framework by school districts and supplementing chapter 6 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes.

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    a.  The Commissioner of Education shall develop and establish an initiative to support and encourage the use of a Response to Intervention framework by school districts to promote the achievement of all students.  The initiative shall include dissemination of information and guidance to school districts regarding the development and effective implementation of a Response to Intervention framework as a methodology to identify struggling learners, maximize student achievement, and reduce behavioral problems.  The initiative shall also include dissemination of information and guidance to school districts regarding the effective use of a Response to Intervention framework as a methodology to identify students with specific learning disabilities in accordance with the “Individuals with Disabilities Education Act,” 20 U.S.C. s.1400 et seq.

     b.    The commissioner shall ensure that a Response to Intervention framework implemented by a school district includes, at a minimum, the following elements:

     (1)   high quality research-based instruction in the general education setting;

     (2)   universal screening procedures to identify students at risk for poor learning outcomes or behavioral challenges;

     (3)   multiple levels of evidence-based interventions that are progressively more intense, based on the student’s responsiveness; and

     (4)   continuous monitoring of student progress.

     c.     The commissioner shall make available technical assistance and training to assist school districts in the implementation of a Response to Intervention framework.

 

     2.    This act shall take effect immediately.

 

 

STATEMENT

 

     This bill directs the Commissioner of Education to develop and establish an initiative to support and encourage the use of a Response to Intervention (RTI) framework by school districts to promote the achievement of all students.  The initiative must include the dissemination of information and guidance to school districts regarding the development and effective implementation of an RTI framework as a methodology to identify struggling learners, maximize student achievement, and reduce behavioral problems.  The initiative also must include the dissemination of information and guidance to school districts regarding the effective use of an RTI framework as a methodology to identify students with specific learning disabilities in accordance with the federal “Individuals with Disabilities Education Act” (IDEA), 20 U.S.C. s.1400 et seq.  State Board of Education regulations at N.J.A.C.6A:14-3.5(c)12.(ii), consistent with the IDEA, expressly permit school districts to utilize a response to intervention methodology to identify students with specific learning disabilities.  The initiative established under the bill would assist districts in the use of RTI for this and other purposes.

     In addition, the bill requires the commissioner to ensure that an RTI framework developed and implemented by a school district includes, at a minimum, certain elements that are commonly recognized as core components of any RTI model.  These elements include: (1) high quality research-based instruction in the general education setting; (2) universal screening procedures to identify students at risk for poor learning outcomes or behavioral challenges; (3) multiple levels of evidence-based interventions that are progressively more intense, based on the student’s responsiveness; and (4) continuous monitoring of student progress.

     Finally, the bill requires the commissioner to make technical assistance and training available to assist school districts in implementing an RTI framework.