Annual IDRA La Semana del Niño Parent Institute™

Bilingual Parent Institute 

Special event for families, community groups, educators and administrators 

See the printable flier for the 2019 institute.

Grounded in our unique model of family leadership in education, the Annual IDRA La Semana del Niño Parent Institute is an event where families lead each other in advocating for equitable and excellent education in their communities.

This annual institute offers families, school district personnel and community groups from across the country the opportunity to network, obtain resources and information, and receive training and bilingual materials on IDRA’s nationally-recognized research-based model for parent leadership in education. The institute is interactive and participatory. All presentations are bilingual (English-Spanish).

Featured Speakers


#FamEngage  #IDRAedu

Registration is now open!

When: April 5, 2019
Time: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm cst
Location: Whitley Theological Center, 285 Oblate Drive, San Antonio, Texas 78216


Highlights from Our 2018 Institute

Watch the 2018 livestream             See 2018 slides and handouts below

Click through the photos from our 2018 Flickr page here or go directly to Flickr to download pictures of your group!

2018 Annual IDRA La Semana del Niño Parent Institute

Keynote by Ms. Rosie Castro 

Ms. Castro has a powerful legacy of community advocacy and is the mother of U.S. Congressman Joaquin Castro and Julián Castro, former San Antonio mayor and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. She recently received an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Our Lady of the Lake University. Watch her presentation.

Special Partners Who Joined Us

National Latino Children’s Institute

NCLI represents a national voice for young Latinos throughout our nation, advocating on behalf of all children and making sure they are heard by elected officials. NCLI is celebrating its 20th birthday this year and has an incredible story and legacy of leadership that has impacted the lives of young Latinos throughout the United States. NCLI is the national steward organization for celebrating April 30 as El Día de Los Niños – Celebrating Young Americans in the United States. See the NLCI website.

Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is a parent involvement, school readiness program that helps parents prepare their 3-, 4-, and 5-year-old children for success in school and beyond. HIPPY is an evidenced-based family support model that works directly with parents in their homes to give them books, activities and skills needed to prepare their children for success in school. HIPPY’s national leadership conference will be held in San Antonio on April 8-11. See the HIPPY USA website.


  • Interactive and participatory sessions on key education topics
  • Most presentations led by parents
  • Practical action steps for parents
  • Examples of successful family engagement
  • Livestream plenaries and interviews
  • Refreshments and lunch
  • Exhibitors, including service providers, colleges and non-profit agencies

Sample Session Topics

The institute featured three rounds of concurrent sessions on over 20 topics, such as…

  • DACA students and education
  • Early childhood education
  • Supporting parents of preschoolers
  • Dropout prevention
  • How Education CAFEs work
  • Cyberbullying law and prevention
  • School board roles & responsibilities
  • How to host your own El Día de los Niños celebration

This year’s institute, funded in part by the IDRA EAC-South and by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation through IDRA’s Texas Education CAFE Network, highlighted family engagement as it relates to the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). 

See the program agenda (PDF)

Slides and handouts from most sessions are below and on the IDRA News App.

DACA, Our Communities and Taking Ownership, presentation by Claudia Sánchez, Texas Victory Project

David’s Law – Stop Bullying Now, presentation by Maurine Molak, parent and founder, David’s Legacy Foundation; and Sandi Weld, parent

Education Rights of Grandchildren, presentation by Mercedes Bristol and Delia Martínez, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

El Dia de los Niños Celebrating Young Americans (English), presentation by Rebeca Barrera and Merri Gutierrez, National Latino Children’s Institute

El Dia de los Niños Celebrating Young Americans (Spanish), presentation by Rebeca Barrera and Merri Gutierrez, National Latino Children’s Institute

High School Graduation Requirements & What Colleges Look For, presentation by Dr. Nilka Avilés, IDRA Senior Education Associate

Home as Learning Lab – HIPPY, presentation by Jessica García and Jenny Guerrero, HIPPY Texas; and Teri Todd, Director of Operations, HIPPY USA

Investing in Education Fuels the Economy, presentation by Pat Stout, Education Fir$t

Impact of Voting on Public Education, presentation by Selene Gomez, Mi Familia Vota

Keeping the Spirit of ESSA – Family Engagement in Texas, presentation by Marisa Perez, Texas State Board of Education

Proof of Strong Parent Leadership at ARISE – Education CAFE, presentation by Eva Carranza and Vicky Santana, ARISE

School Board Roles & Responsibilities, presentation by Velma Vela Ybarra

Top 10 Ways to Make Schools Safer for LGBTQ Students, presentation by Logan Vega, Irene Galindo-Cantu and Michelle Vega

What is Your Dream for Children, sample responses by institute participants

Why Fair Funding of Schools Matters for Every Child, presentation by David Hinojosa, IDRA National Director of Policy

Youth Code Jam – Technology and Children’s Future, presentation by Kevin Wooton, BGen (ret.), USAF, parent, Youth Code Jam board member

See a video clip made by our participants from Southwest ISD

Find out why IDRA’s Parent Institute is so Powerful!

Read articles about our previous parent institutes: 

See our new toolkits for school districts on ESSA requirements for parent involvement

Intercultural Development Research Association

IDRA is an independent, non-profit organization that is dedicated to assuring educational opportunity for every child. Sponsoring IDRA projects for this event in 2019:

Information about IDRA and our services is available online

Highlights 2017

Highlights 2016

Highlights 2015