November-December 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Principal Leadership
“The challenge before us is not that the faces of our nation’s children are changing. Our challenge is not our children at all, but rather our capacity, commitment and will as adults to achieve excellence in education for all students – every one.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
This issue of the IDRA Newsletter includes articles on fostering excellence through social justice principles in schools serving English learners and school leadership transforming schools with linguistically diverse student populations along with highlights from IDRA’s recent high school attrition stories and resources.
Fostering Excellence through Social Justice Principles in Schools Serving English Learners, by Nilka Avilés, Ed.D.
School Leadership Transforming Schools with Linguistically Diverse Student Populations, by Kristin Grayson, M.Ed.
Learn about the IDRA IDRA EAC-South
“One in four freshmen disappear by their senior year. Texas is still losing 12 students every hour. In today’s economy, Texas cannot afford to fully educate some students and not others. We just can’t.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
This issue of the IDRA Newsletter provides highlights from IDRA’s annual attrition study for Texas that will be released soon, a story on in-grade retention in the early years, a story on instruction for secondary English learners, a winning essay by a tutor in the IDRA Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program. Schools continue to lose and push children of color out of schools through a variety of practices and behaviors (low expectations, inappropriate disciplinary referrals, in-grade retention, watered down curriculum).
In-Grade Retention in the Early Years – What’s Holding Children Back? by Paula Johnson, M.A.
Instruction for Secondary English Learners – Major Challenges, Solutions and Possibilities, by Kristin Grayson, Ph.D.
Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program Winning Essay, by Stefan García
September 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Accountability and Civic Engagement
“We must connect school outcomes – graduation and college readiness – with what it takes to produce those outcomes: actionable knowledge to support engaged citizens, accountable leadership, and good public policy that leverages change.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Schools belong to their neighborhoods. Civic engagement leads to community- and school-based leadership and action to secure equality of educational opportunity for every child. This issue of the IDRA Newsletter provides stories about ESSA potential impact on communities of color, project based learning, and connections between school administrators and family leaders in education.
Will States Use ESSA to Undermine Communities of Color as Some Have for Voting Rights? by David G. Hinojosa, J.D., and Jerry Wilson, M.A.
Project Based Learning – Changing Learning Paradigms One Lesson at a Time, by Nilka Avilés, Ed.D., and Nadiah Al-Gasem, Ph.D.
Co-Leading and Co-Transforming Schools – School Administrators and Family Leaders in Education, by Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.
Podcast: Intergenerational Family Leadership for Schools, Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.
August 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Teaching Quality
“Teaching quality is about the men and women who dedicate their lives to educating our children. It is also about providing the training, mentoring, coaching and professional development that nurtures teachers’ development and success in serving our diverse student population.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Students need competent caring teachers who are well prepared, placed in their field of study and informed by continual professional development. This issue of the IDRA Newsletter provides stories about fostering culturally diverse learning environments, unlocking instruction through structured teaching, creating positive school climates and diverse populations along with our school opening alert regarding immigrant students’ rights to attend public schools.
Fostering Culturally Diverse Learning Environments, by Paula Johnson, M.A.
Unlocking Instruction Through Structured Teaching, by Nilka Avilés, Ed.D.
Positive School Climates and Diverse Populations, by Kristin Grayson, Ph.D.
Podcast: How Principals Can Support their Teachers, Nilka Avilés, Ed.D.
June-July 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Culture of Poverty vs. Culture of Possibility
“In the outdated culture-of-poverty perspective, the traits – and deficits – of students are the focus. But IDRA’s culture-of-possibility frame recognizes the assets of students and focuses on the responsibility of the institution.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
This issue of the IDRA Newsletter provides stories about open source technology tools, problems with the 30-million-word gap perceptions, and exceptional student essays.
Open Source Learning Tools Make STEM Possible in Underserved Schools, by Mark Barnett
Differences as Deficiencies – The Persistence of the 30 Million Word Gap, by Sofía Bahena, Ed.D.
Confusing Correlation with Causation, by Sofía Bahena, Ed.D.
May 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Student Voice
“Whether students are in a classroom, a meeting or a public hearing, they must be active participants. The context must presume them to be the intelligent agents they are, capable of contributing important and essential ideas. Our students possess unique insights and powerful gifts!” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Students must have a voice that is listened to by the adults who teach them and who make decisions that affect their lives. This issue of the IDRA Newsletter has stories of youth who launched a campaign about environmental justice in their community, other young people pushing for college preparation for students in their neighborhoods, voices of teenage tutors, and ways teachers can foster conversation in the classroom through instructional dialogue.
Youths in Action – Intergenerational Leadership, by Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.
Students Become Leaders in their Community to Support Peers on the Path Toward College, by Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.
Podcast: English Learners and the New ESSA Law, Kristin Grayson, Ph.D., and David Hinojosa, J.D.
April 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Early Learning
“We serve children best and most effectively when we reflect on the learning environments we create and structure them to support and respond to the characteristics of our little learners.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
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 M. Montemayor, M.Ed., Consuelo Casas, Berta A. Medrano, Abby Gonzalez
Technology in Early Childhood (reprint)
Semillitas de Aprendizaje Storytelling & Storyreading Video Samples – Both storytelling and storyreading support learning in the classroom and provide different kinds of literacy experiences for students. This engaging DVD by IDRA contains the 10 Semillitas de Aprendizaje stories told in two styles: storyreading (in English) and storytelling (in Spanish).
Bilingual Early Childhood Education – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel talks the vital importance of quality bilingual early childhood education is a good investment in children and the larger community. [01:21]
March 2016 IDRA Newsletter – College Preparedness
“We must make sure that every student has access to high-quality teaching and a quality curriculum that prepares them for post-secondary education. The future is in our hands.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Ready Texas: Gathering Stakeholder Input to Guide Research on New Texas High School Graduation Plans, by Laurie Posner, M.P.A.
by Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed.
by Nilka Avilés, Ed.D.
You can also download the alert as a bilingual school opening alert flier (English-Spanish) to share with others.
Podcast: Texas Higher Ed Commissioner on College Access, Christie L. Goodman, APR, and Laurie Posner, MPA
February 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Valuing & Asset-Based Solutions
“A vital nation must have educational parity for all students and not parcel out one set of opportunities for some and minimal expectations for others. All students deserve an equitable, excellent and college bound education.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Ensuring Equity and Nondiscrimination in Student Discipline Policy and Practice, by David Hinojosa, J.D.
#AllMeansAll – Finding and Addressing the Roots of Educational Inequity, by Laurie Posner, M.P.A.
STEM Pathways for Girls of Color – A Review of the Literature, by Paula Johnson, M.A.
January 2016 IDRA Newsletter – Language
“English language learners should not have to give up their language, their culture, or their diversity as the price for learning English. When ELL students walk into a classroom in this country, they should not be limited in their access to an equitable and excellent education. For that to occur, teachers and schools must be equipped to serve them.” – Dr. María “Cuca” Robledo Montecel, IDRA President and CEO
Transformative and Effective School Leadership in Culturally Diverse Environments, by Rosana G. Rodríguez, Ph.D., and Abelardo Villarreal, Ph.D.
Giving English Learners Access to Language and Curriculum in Rural Arkansas, by Kristin Grayson, Ph.D.