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Thursday, 28 May 2015

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See IDRA’s latest annual report, The Power of Possibility: How IDRA and its partners are changing public education.



IDRA’s book, Courage to Connect: A Quality Schools Action Framework™. See how communities and schools can work together to strengthen their capacity to be successful with all of their students. Visit the book’s web page to get a table of contents, excerpt, related podcasts and other resources related to this book.


We’ve launched the IDRA Newsletter in a mobile-ready e-Letter format! Now you can choose how you want to receive the newsletter, which is also published in print and on the IDRA website. Sign up to get the IDRA Newsletter by email today!





Call for Applications for IDRA José A. Cárdenas School Finance Fellows Program
IDRA is inviting research applications for the IDRA José A. Cárdenas School Finance Fellows Program. This will be the second round of this new fellows program to support research that will inform efforts to secure equitable funding of public schools across the country. The Call for Applications packet is online now. IDRA will select one or more fellows who will dedicate themselves to a period of intense study and writing in school finance. This second round José A. Cárdenas School Finance Fellow will be selected for a defined period beginning in early 2016.


Texas Equity Gaps Would Have Increased Under Aycock’s School Funding Plan
Texas Legislature Now Has Opportunity to Positively Impact Equity and Adequacy
The Texas Latino Education Coalition, whose members include IDRA and over a dozen other organizations, released a statement on Texas school finance and what lies ahead for the Texas legislature. Rep. Aycock chose to withdraw his school finance plan (CSHB 1759) last week rather than engage in the hours of debate that were expected as a result of various controversial features contained in his legislation. While some school districts have bemoaned the lower chamber’s failure to adopt the House school funding plan, the Texas Latino Education Coalition concluded that the plan contained too many flaws that contributed to its failure to make it off the House floor. However, the Texas Legislature still has the opportunity to make things right through their appropriation power. 


Early Childhood Literacy Connections When Using Cognates 
Teachers of English language learners use a variety of instructional strategies and tools to guide their students in learning the content while also building English language proficiency. One key strategy uses cognates, words in two languages that are common in meaning, spelling and even pronunciation. In this article, Sulema Carreón-Sánchez, Ph.D., discusses how the use of cognates in early grades helps students begin to make connections to math, science, social studies and reading and can continue the connections as they progress through school.


Margarita’s Necklace – Beads, Patterns and Algebraic Thinking for English Learners: The Path to “Equity Literacy”
Children as early as kindergarten benefit from practicing the skills and building comprehension and knowledge that lead to mastery in algebra. In this article, Juanita C. García, Ph.D., and Rosana Rodríguez, Ph.D., describe how stories like El Collar de Margarita ~ Margarita’s Necklace can lead children to explore and analyze patterns, count and make predictions that are essential skills in developing math literacy, thereby increasing their ability to identify, describe and foster algebraic reasoning in the early elementary grades. El Collar de Margarita ~ Margarita’s Necklace is one of a number of stories that comprise IDRA’s comprehensive Semillitas de aprendizaje bilingual supplemental early childhood.


Six Teens Win 2015 Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program National Essay Contest Awards
​Six students received prizes in a national competition among participants in the IDRA Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program, a nationally-recognized cross-age tutoring program of the Intercultural Development Research Association. Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program tutors wrote about how the program helped them do better in school and how they had helped their tutees to do better. Agustina García wrote: “I no longer want to be referred to as the student who is a troublemaker and doesn’t seem to care about her education. I want to be looked at as a role model, responsible student, and community leader."


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