Question: Is Response to intervention (RTI) a special education program? Answer: No. RTI is not synonymous with special education. They are very different. RTI is not a legal agreement between the school system and parents. An RTI does not legally bind the school system to provide the services agreed to, but an IEP does. They are very different from each other. There are academic situations where an RTI teaching approach can be considered best practice rather than implementing an IEP. However only with diligent reasoning can this conclusion be determined. Before parents agree to one or the other they need to have expert advice that is based on a thorough understanding of the child’s educational strengths, weakness, and expectations.