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Wednesday, 25 May 2016

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See IDRA’s latest annual report, The Power of Possibility: How IDRA and Our Partners are Transforming 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.


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Fair Funding is Nonnegotiable – Texas Must Have Excellent Schools for All
The Texas Supreme Court ruling does not excuse state policymakers from putting Texas children first. In its ruling today on school funding, the Texas Supreme Court failed to ensure the constitutional right to a quality education for school children in the state of Texas.  The court issued its decision in the Texas Taxpayer and Student Fairness Coalition vs. Michael Williams, et al., case. Previously, the Texas District Court had ruled previously that the current funding system is “constitutionally inadequate, unsuitable and financially inefficient.”  


“English Learners and the New ESSA Law” IDRA Classnotes Podcast
Just a few months ago, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) became law, succeeding the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The new federal education law has significant implications for the education of English language learners. The implications range from entry and exit procedures, to accountability requirements and parent communication. Kristin Grayson, Ph.D., IDRA education associate, discusses implications for schools and resources educators can use to ensure ELs receive an excellent education. Kristin is interviewed David Hinojosa, J.D., IDRA’s national director of policy and director of the IDRA South Central Collaborative for Equity. Send comments to This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it . Sign up to receive free e-mail notices when new episodes are available.


Implementation of New Texas Graduation Requirements Needs Further Study – Ready Texas: Stakeholder Convening Proceedings Report Released
Texas adopted substantial changes to high school curricula in 2013 (under House Bill 5). Policymakers, education and business leaders, families, and students are now faced with the question of how implementation of those changes is impacting the state of college readiness and success in Texas. The Ready Texas: Stakeholder Convening led by IDRA and carried out in partnership with UTeach at UT Austin, brought together education, community, policy, foundation, business and philanthropic leaders to discuss the future of post-secondary education in Texas and to provide input on the design of a statewide study of HB5 implementation. The convening was made possible through a grant from Greater Texas Foundation. The proceedings report captures highlights from the project.


Three Signs that Your Pre-K Might Need a Make Over
​This article by Felix Montes, Ph.D., offers some guidance in this regard, through three scenarios based on comments he heard in some of my classroom observations and teacher interviews. There is no question about the need and long-term effectiveness of investing in universal prekindergarten education. The question now is one of quality. As an advocate for high-quality education for all children, IDRA is deeply concerned about this issue.


Latest issue of the IDRA Newsletter Early Learning
Take a look at our latest newsletter. Quality early education has an immediate impact on both the hard skills – language, numeracy, higher cognitive thinking – and the soft skills – social skills – that last a lifetime. Access to quality early childhood education (including bilingual programs for ELLs) is critical to ensuring academic success while valuing children’s cultural, linguistic, gender and racial uniqueness. This issue of the IDRA Newsletter includes: “Three Signs that Your Pre-K Might Need a Make Over,” by Felix Montes, Ph.D.; “Bilingual Early Childhood Education – Capitalizing on the Language and Culture of the Home and Introducing English,” by Aurelio Montemayor, M.Ed., Consuelo Casas, and Berta A. Medrano, and Abby Gonzalez; “Technology in Early Childhood,” and our staff feature, “Meet Felix Montes, Ph.D.

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