Check out this Education Week article about the use of RtI and the identification of students with disabilities. Personally, I have struggled with this the past two school years. It seems virtually impossible to get students identified. Our district has basically told teachers that we have too many students identified as special needs. They have made the referral process an incredible battle to get students the services they desperately need to be successful. Teaching in an inner-city school brings many challenges, getting students the help they need should not be one of those challenges. I was happy to read in this article that: "The RTI process can't be used to deny or delay these evaluations." This has too often been the case in my district.
How Should Students With Learning Disabilities Be Identified? - On Special Education - Education Week