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Academics » Intervention & Referral Services

Intervention & Referral Services

I&RS Frequently Asked Questions


A. New Jersey Administrative Code requires all school districts to have this service. The code is quoted below:

6A:16-8.1 Establishment of intervention and referral services

District boards of education shall establish and implement a coordinated system in each school building for the planning and delivery of intervention and referral services that are designed to assist students who are experiencing learning, behavior, or health difficulties and to assist staff who have difficulties in addressing students learning, behavior or health needs. District boards of education shall choose the appropriate multidisciplinary team approach for planning and delivering the services required under this subchapter.

Q. What is the purpose of I&RS?

A. Identify learning, behavior, and health difficulties of students.

  • Collect thorough information on identified learning, behavior, and health difficulties.
    Develop and implement action plans which provide for appropriate school or community interventions or referrals to school and community resources, based on the collected data and desired outcomes for the identified learning, behavior, and health difficulties.
  • Provide support, guidance, and professional development to school staff that identifies learning, behavior, and health difficulties.
  • Provide support, guidance, and professional development to school staff that participates in each building's system for planning and providing intervention and referral services.
  • Actively involve parents or guardians in the development and implementation of intervention and referral services action plan.


Q. How is I&RS similar to the Child Study Team?


A. Both teams support teachers and students.

Both are comprised of professionally trained staff.

Both are regulated by statutes.


Q. How is I&RS different from the Child Study Team?

A. I&RS teams write Action Plans, based on teacher referrals and specific observable information. These plans are reviewed annually, at a minimum.

  • CST uses test results to place students into different programs, such as resource centers, in-class support, self-contained, or alternative educational placements. Child Study Teams write Individualized Education Plans or IEPs which are reviewed annually, at a minimum.
  • Typically, an I&RS Team is comprised of the Assistant Principal, Student Assistance Coordinator,  Counselors, teachers, other specialized members, such as speech therapists, nurses, and Child Study Team Members.
  • Typically a Child Study Team is comprised of a school psychologist, a learning disabilities teacher consultant, and a social worker. Therapists, teachers, the nurse, and counselors may also participate.


Q. What if I receive a letter indicating that the I&RS team will meet to discuss one of my students or my child?


A. Your participation in the survey as the child’s parent is important to allow for the most effective and informed process to help the child.

If you disagree with the process, you may contact the Assistant Principal, but there are no due process rights with regard to Intervention and Referral Services; the school is permitted to conduct the meeting with or without parental support.


Q.  What types of issues are typically discussed?


A.  Academic failure/lack of progress; health issues; behavior issues; social & emotional issues


Q.  What types of recommendations are made by the I&RS Team?


A.  Recommendations may range from in-class accommodations, such as seat changes, extra time on assignments, bathroom or snack breaks, focusing cues, positive reinforcement strategies, study guides, etc., to more intensive recommendations, such as a Section 504 Plan referral or referral to the Child Study Team for a full evaluation.

Students are provided with a teacher case manager/mentor who will work with your child, you, and your child’s teachers to chart growth and progress or areas of needed improvements.