Services for Educators

MAS for Our Schools – Student Researchers Explore the State of Mexican American Studies

MAS for Our SchoolsIDRA supported a team of high school students studying the state of Mexican American Studies in their area schools. The MAS for Our Schools youth participatory action research project was a study by students from the Mexican American Studies Student Association (MASSA) at Marshall High School in San Antonio’s Northside ISD. MASSA is an independent student organization that advocates and recruits students to take Mexican American Studies classes.

MAS for Our Schools IDRA TeamHigh school seniors Marcela Hernández, Jonas Lokensgard and Hannah Rosales investigated the status of Mexican American Studies (MAS) in their community and how to help it grow. They conducted a mixed-methods study, involving a student experience survey and focus group interviews with teachers and community members. IDRA provided the student researchers with training in the basics of survey research, delving specifically into community-based research, basic data collection, and quantitative and qualitative research methods.

IDRA released in March 2024 the students’ report, MAS for Our Schools – A Youth Participatory Action Research Project on the Status of Mexican American Studies in San Antonio. The students presented their work at the annual conference of the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies in March 2024.  

The project was generously supported by the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL). The IDRA mentors and trainers were Aurelio M. Montemayor, M.Ed. (, and Christina Quintanilla-Muñoz, M.Ed. (

See IDRA resources on Cultural and Ethnic Studies.

See the flier about the students’ report (PDF).

See Related Articles

Preyor-Johnson: Meet the students hoping to make Mexican American Studies a core class, by Nancy M. Preyor-Johnson, columnist, San Antonio Express-News, April 5, 2024

MAS Springs Youthfully – Teacher and Student Advocacy of Mexican American Studies. IDRA Newsletter, March 2023

Mexican American Studies – A Deep Look by High School Students, by Marcela Hernández, Jonas Lokensgard & Hannah Rosales, February 2024