Two New IDEA Campuses to Join the IDEA Rio Grande Valley Team & Family this Fall

IDEA Public Schools will grow from 31 to 35 schools this fall in its flagship region of the Rio Grande Valley.  Read on to learn more about these new campuses, and their excitement to educate more students on the road to and though college. Join us for the 2017-2018 school year!  

IDEA Academy and College Preparatory Rio Grande City

Rio Grande City, Texas    


Meet Fernando Salinas.  Fernando is a long-time IDEA employee, who first joined as a teacher, became an assistant principal, a principal-in-residence, and now a principal at IDEA Academy and College Preparatory Rio Grande City.  Fernando is thrilled to lead a talented group of educators as they establish the first IDEA campus in Starr County, Texas.

Growing up in Rio Grande City, it was there Fernando first connected a quality education to a bright future.  IDEA Public Schools is thrilled to open the brand-new campus and educate the students of the community Fernando grew up in. 

Rose Benavidez, president of the Starr County Industrial Foundation, noted that the creation of IDEA Rio Grande City is, “A good opportunity for students to have options for their education.”  

IDEA Tres Lagos Academy and College Preparatory

Edinburg, Texas 

Mike and Lori Rhodes, founders of the Rhodes Enterprises, a premier development company based in the Rio Grande Valley, have been long-time partners with IDEA Public Schools and incredible supporters over the years.  Their most recent partnership project with IDEA Public Schools is IDEA Tres Lagos Academy and College Preparatory, which will open this fall for students in the greater McAllen and Edinburg area.    

Mike and Lori have stated that building communities has been the catalyst in their work, and that education is the key.  “IDEA Public Schools has changed education for the better...not only statewide, but nationwide,” Mike noted.  “We’re proud to work with IDEA.”


IDEA Tres Lagos Academy will be led by Benigna Carcano, who was born and raised in McAllen, Texas.  Benigna brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to her Tres Lagos Team & Family, having been in the education field for sixteen years now.  After fourteen rewarding years in public schools, she joined IDEA’s Team & Family as a member of the principal-in-residence cohort.   


Megan Arenas-Goosen will lead IDEA Tres Lagos College Preparatory.  Megan joined IDEA as a Pre-AP and AP Biology teacher in 2010, and she quickly became a grade team leader, content leader, a district curriculum writer, an assistant principal of operations, an International Baccalaureate coordinator, and a principal-in-residence.  In addition, she has participated in Teach for America’s Rural School Leadership fellowship and Harvard’s Certificate for Advanced Education Leadership program.    

The greater McAllen area, where IDEA Tres Lagos has been established, is home to several already existing IDEA campuses, but the demand for an IDEA education persists.  Last year, 50,000 students applied for 10,000 seats. Families in the community eagerly await the opening of IDEA Tres Lagos for the opportunity to access to a great education.  


In August 2017, both campuses will open their doors and serve 520 Pre-K - 1st and 6th graders and, by 2024, will expand to a full Pre-K - 12 campus.  There are still limited spots available at both campuses.  Join the IDEA Team & Family today, and enroll now.   

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