Making a Monster- The Tragedy of Victims Becoming Victimizers

I knew “Gene” before he was a monster.  When he was a victim.  Repeatedly, ritually abused by older “family” members-plural. I am not just saying this, but he was a really nice kid, gentle, caring.  If something was being planned at the group home, where someone might get hurt he is the kid who might … Continue reading Making a Monster- The Tragedy of Victims Becoming Victimizers


When Good Intentions Go Bad, Opportunity Hoarders and Equity in Oakland

Existing rules and the dynamics of choice tend to increase inequality.  There don’t need to be any bad actors.  As parents we all do try to do the best we can for our children.  But that pattern of choices, and neighborhood assignment, tend to reinforce and increase the distance between children of advantage and those … Continue reading When Good Intentions Go Bad, Opportunity Hoarders and Equity in Oakland


Choosers, Losers, Abusers and “Opportunity Hoarding” in Oakland

School choice can divide us into winners and losers.  In fact it already has.  I am talking about charters. But not just charters, also those lucky enough to be able to choose where they live, with corresponding quality neighborhood schools, or have the resources to hustle their kid into an-out-of neighborhood or private option, the … Continue reading Choosers, Losers, Abusers and “Opportunity Hoarding” in Oakland


When Universities and Schools Partner for Success-Cal Prep

Aspire Public Schools and Cal have done something special for East Bay kids.  They have given them more than hopes and dreams, they have given ways and means, through an innovative and robust early college partnership; Cal Prep.  This should be a model for higher education involvement in K-12 and I hope we see more … Continue reading When Universities and Schools Partner for Success-Cal Prep


The Facts on Oakland’s Foster Students and How We Can Do Better

It’s National Foster Care Month and Oakland’s numbers are crying out for action.  We can do better, we need to do different, and this month and ongoing I will be shining a light on these children, our children. First let’s look at the facts—which are dismal—you can see the charts below from Oakland Unified.  But … Continue reading The Facts on Oakland’s Foster Students and How We Can Do Better