• IDRA Newsletter • February 2019 •

This year, the IDRA Newsletter will continue to highlight our staff’s varied and diverse talents and backgrounds. Morgan Craven, J.D., is IDRA’s new national director of policy and is a leading expert in school discipline, policing in schools, and school safety. At IDRA, she develops leadership within communities, schools and policymaking bodies to advocate policies that ensure educational opportunity for every child, with special emphases on students of color and low-income, English learner and recent immigrant populations.

Morgan is from Atlanta and loves to travel the world. She has twice lived in South Africa. And she has lived on the U.S. West Coast where she studied international relations at Stanford University and on the East Coast as a law student at Harvard Law School, where she met her husband.

As a mom of two young Black and Latino boys, Morgan focuses her work on creating the type of school environment she wants for her sons – not a place that feels like a prison or that limits opportunities for people who look like them, but rather a safe and nurturing place set up for their success.

Morgan brings over a decade of experience in research and providing legal advice on issues of equity, particularly education access, school discipline, and systemic and structural inequities. Morgan recently served as the director of Texas Appleseed’s School-to-Prison Pipeline Project, where she led successful local and statewide campaigns to address the practices and systems that push children out of school and into the justice system. For example, because of her work and that of the coalitions she led, Texas has significantly limited school suspensions for children in second grade and younger, and several cities have repealed their harmful juvenile curfew ordinances.

Prior to joining Texas Appleseed, Morgan served as a briefing attorney to former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson and as a staff attorney at Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA) in San Antonio. At TRLA, she represented students with disabilities in special education and school discipline cases as well as individuals and families in housing and public benefits cases.

Morgan has served as an advisor to the Essie Justice Group, an organization that harnesses the collective power of women with incarcerated loved ones to end mass incarceration’s harm to women and communities.  Morgan was a researcher for the Everest Project, an initiative that looks at how women executives are effective at leading change and innovation in their companies.

Morgan received the Center for Public Policy Priorities’ 2018 Future of Texas Award, which is given to a visionary young leader who has made a demonstrable and valuable impact on Texas.

[©2019, IDRA. This article originally appeared in the February 2019 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.]