FPU event brings together educators to help students learn

Supporting students with strategic help in their regular classrooms is the goal of “Putting RtI2 into Practice: Response to Intervention and Instruction with a Focus on Writing,” May 12-13, 2011, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Special Events Center on the main campus.

Sign up for early bird registration by May 2 and pay $100 for the two-day workshop, refreshments, lunch both days and the Vendor Faire. Regular registration is $150. Register and get more information at fresno.edu/rticonference.

RtI2 (squared), or Response to Instruction and Intervention, is a process schools use to identify and assist students who need learning support. Participants will learn the instructional strategies essential to implement RtI interventions. “Too many kids have been identified as special education students, yet they are capable of learning in the general classroom,” said Diana Taylor-Gillham, Ed.D., FPU special education faculty.

Anita Archer, Ph.D., is the guest speaker. Known nationally as a presenter, she won awards as an elementary and middle school teacher and has taught at San Diego State University, the University of Washington and the University of Oregon. Curriculum materials she helped create include REWARDS, REWARDS Plus, REWARDS Writing and Skills for School Success. She was also senior author of Phonics for Reading and co-author of the textbook Explicit and Effective Teaching.

This conference focuses on writing instruction because of its importance to students. “That’s the most defining factor for success,” Taylor-Gillham said.

The conference is sponsored by FPU, the Diagnostic Center and California Services for Technical Assistance and Training (CalSTAT), a program of the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs. About 100 teachers involved in the Effective Reading Intervention Academy through CalSTAT and the Diagnostic Center will take part in the conference. Located in Fresno, the Diagnostic Center is a state agency under the California Department of Education. (dcc-cde.ca.gov/)

About 700 teachers, administrators and service provider’s were at last year’s inaugural conference and organizers say anywhere from 500-1,000 could attend this year. Participants can take part in the Vendor Faire for providers of educational and professional materials, toys, children’s books and other supplies.