Education Policy

Using inclusive, cutting edge and broad-based strategies, IDRA develops leadership within communities, schools, and policymaking bodies to create collaborative and enlightened educational policies that work for all children.

See IDRA’s Online Tool: IDRA’s Texas School Finance news dashboard

Latest News for Texas

Bilingual Education Funding

Policy Brief: Most English Learners Would Be Excluded from the Proposed Dual Language Weight 

Bilingual Allotment Data Dashboard: IDRA created this data dashboard to show scenarios of how increasing the bilingual education allotment will impact schools within each Texas House or Senate district.

Testimony: Without Increased Resources for English Learners, Texas Compromises Education for One-fifth of Students, February 13, 2019

New! Testimony: Keep Spending Guidelines for Bilingual and Comp Ed Funding, April 25, 2019

State Share of School Funding

Infographic: Texas State Divestment of Education

Policy Brief: Fair and Essential Education Funding Requires State Investment

School Funding

Statement: New Texas School Finance Proposals Are a Start, But There is Still Work to Be Done to Ensure Fair Funding for All Students

Analysis: Summary of Comprehensive Texas School Finance Bill

Individual Graduation Committees

Testimony: TLEC Urges Texas House to Permanently Allow the Use of Individual Graduation Committees

Statement: Reported STAAR Design Flaws in Reading Show Why High-stakes Punishments Should be Removed from the STAAR

Policy Brief: Don’t Block Graduation Because of a Test

Infographic: Use of Individual Graduation Committees Unlocks Diplomas for 14,422 Qualified Students in Texas

Top Ten Percent Plan

Analysis: Texas Top Ten Percent Plan at UT-Austin Has Dramatic Impact Within Texas Senate Districts

Charter Schools and Privatization

Joint Statement: Increase the Transparency and Efficiency of Charter Schools in Texas

School Safety

New! Testimony: Use Effective Discipline, Not Zero Tolerance – IDRA Testimony Against SB2432, April 30, 2019

Testimony: Clearly Define the Role of Law Enforcement in Schools – Officers Should Not Be Called on to Handle School Disciplinary Matters, IDRA Testimony on SB1 707, March 26, 2019

Joint Statement: Legislative Solutions for Safe Schools Must Include School-Based Strategies that Help Educators and Support Students

School Holding Power

Research: Texas High Schools Lost 1 in 5 Students Last Year – IDRA attrition study 

Research: Poor Children Are More Likely to Disappear from Schools in Texas

Federal Policy

The U.S. Congress plays a pivotal role in helping states achieve this goal as it considers reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). IDRA’s track record in educational pedagogy, research and policy on behalf of minority and at-risk school children and emerging communities forms a strong basis for its policy recommendations at the…

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IDRA Policy Issues for Texas

IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 See PDF version (one page) See PDF version (with resource links)   Fair Funding that Ensures Equity and Excellence for All Students IDRA Stands All state and local aid made available for public schools should be funded through equalized formulas. Efforts to reduce recapture must be done equitably.…

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Texas Latino Education Coalition

The Texas Latino Education Coalition (TLEC) is a collaborative of organizations and individuals who advocate the rights of Latinos at the local, state and national levels. The coalition was organized to focus specifically on critical educational issues in Texas and improve the state of education for Latino students in public schools. Its education agenda is…

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Fair Funding for the Common Good

A child's future should not depend on his or her heritage, parents' income or neighborhood. Our sense of justice insists that America be the land of opportunity where all citizens are considered equal, that wherever a student comes from or lives he or she should have the opportunity to succeed. All children must have access to…

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Fair Discipline that Keeps Children in Safe Schools

IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 IDRA Stands Ensure school safety and foster positive school climates by providing critical funds and supporting research-based programs and school-based professionals, like counselors and social workers. Eliminate harmful, unnecessary exclusionary discipline and policing practices inside schools. Make sure the same high-quality curriculum is available in all schools to…

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Public Funding for Public Schools (non-privatization)

Keeping the Public in Public Schools IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 IDRA Stands Public money must have public oversight and must not be diverted to private interests. There must be no further expansion of charter schools and limited public funds for facilities should not be siphoned off for charter schools. Why? The best…

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Accountability that Doesn’t Hurt Children

IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 Effective Accountability that Puts Children First and Supports Schools IDRA Stands The state’s accountability system should be supportive, moving away from rigid, punitive structures. The state should collect some valid testing data and other performance measures to enable it to hold schools accountable for student achievement with data…

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Testing that Doesn’t Hurt Children

IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 Testing that Doesn’t Hurt Children IDRA Stands No single measure should be used to make high-stakes decisions for promotion or graduation. The state should continue to graduate students who prove their well-rounded academic qualifications to independent graduation committees (IGCs). Why? Reliance on a single measure fails to consider…

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English Language Learner Education

IDRA English Learning Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 IDRA Stands Laws requiring bilingual education programs in elementary schools must remain, and exceptions must be strongly discouraged. And ELs in secondary schools must have access to teachers who are trained in EL instruction. The state should modify its procedures for monitoring EL performance by disaggregating…

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College Access for Success

IDRA Policy Issues for Texas in 2019 IDRA Stands Texas’ high school curriculum should prepare all students for college with high-quality, rigorous courses. Students should not be tracked into low-level courses nor into different diploma routes or graduation plans. In-state tuition rates for all Texas students, including undocumented immigrant students, must remain. Funding for need-based…

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Student Tracking Policies Weaken Curriculum

After years of research and practice have demonstrated the failure of student tracking policies, Texas has returned to the practice under the guise of helping unsuccessful students be able to earn a minimal diploma. But the state of Texas is responsible for ensuring that all students have equal access to a high quality education and…

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Dropout Prevention & School Holding Power

School Holding Power Texas schools are losing 11 students per hour Nationally, our schools are losing one of every four students. This lack of school holding power affects every one of us. With the magnitude of this loss, what is needed is a seismic shift from dropout prevention to graduation for all. And all must mean all.…

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Education of Immigrant Children

Immigrant Students’ Rights to Attend Public Schools Public schools, by law, must serve all children. The education of undocumented students is guaranteed by the Plyler vs. Doe Supreme Court decision, and certain procedures must be followed when registering immigrant children in school to avoid violation of their civil rights. As a result of the U.S. Supreme…

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High Quality Teaching

Teaching Quality Success in school means having quality teachers, i.e., teachers who know their subject, who know effective instructional practices and who value their students. Unfortunately, many students – particularly those who are in poor schools or high-minority schools – do not have access to enough of these teachers. Some schools do not provide quality…

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Quality Schools Action Framework

IDRA’s Quality Schools Action Framework™ shows how we can strengthen public education for all students. The framework – or theory of change – is grounded in school reform research and practice. Developed by IDRA president and CEO Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, it asserts that: Though often neglected, coalition-building and community capacity-building are critical change strategies in improving…

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