• IDRA Newsletter • September 2004 • 

For almost 20 years, the Intercultural Development Research Association has worked with schools to improve their holding power through effective dropout prevention efforts. This year, IDRA continues this work through a new partnership with Clemson University, the Educational Development Corporation and the newly established National Dropout Prevention Center for Students with Disabilities (NDPC-SD).

The NDPC-SD is housed in Clemson University’s National Dropout Prevention Center/Network and is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs.

The goal of NDPC-SD is to provide support to state and local education agencies as they work to keep students with disabilities in school. This support includes guidance and technical assistance in designing, implementing, and evaluating effective dropout prevention programs for students with disabilities.

Through this partnership, IDRA shares its considerable experience in dropout prevention by identifying and disseminating effective model resources, such as IDRA’s Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program. IDRA is also ensuring that such information is linguistically- and culturally-appropriate, and meaningful, particularly for Hispanic parents. IDRA will also be providing technical assistance to state education agencies and others.

Building on its extensive experience in designing, developing, producing and disseminating effective models that result in changes in practice at the classroom level, IDRA is creating a process for identifying proven models that will include:

  • Developing criteria for identifying exemplary, proven (research- and evidence-based) models at the national level;
  • Inventorying existing models in collaboration with clearinghouses including the What Works Clearinghouse and the What’s Working Synthesis Center;
  • Using the established criteria, selecting proven models, ensuring that the models have evidence of effectiveness for students with disabilities;
  • Keeping the model’s critical elements intact, adapting materials as needed for special populations, such as English language learners.

Once identified, effective models will be disseminated using the most effective dissemination tools available, including the new NDPC-SD web site and the What Works Clearinghouse. Promising practices also will be identified using the rigorous set of criteria established by the Clearinghouse and the U.S. Department of Education in order to provide a full array of possibilities for schools. Other collaborators include the Promoting What Works Synthesis Center and the National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET).

NCSET recently published a manual for policymakers, administrators, and educators that provides 11 exemplary dropout prevention models and characteristics of those models. IDRA’s Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program is one of the 11 program models featured.


For more information on the NDPC-SD, contact IDRA at 210-444-1710 or visit the new NDPC-SD web site at http://www.dropoutprevention.org.

For more information on IDRA’s Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program, contact IDRA or visit the IDRA web site at http://www.idra.org.

Comments and questions may be directed to IDRA via e-mail at feedback@idra.org.

[©2004, IDRA. The above article originally appeared in the September 2004 IDRA Newsletter by the Intercultural Development Research Association. Permission to reproduce this article is granted provided the article is reprinted in its entirety and proper credit is given to IDRA and the author.]