A recap of all the coverage of Oakland education issues and beyond– this week–The OUSD board gives itself a raise and unwittingly approves a charter renewal, school library cuts, school enrollment deadlines, a youth led forum with the superintendent, elementary schools that Asian-American families should consider, schools and teaching of consent, all that and much more with info and links below, please read and share
Best of the Rest
How you can help
Another Failed Battle in Oakland’s Charter School Wars- The Accidental Renewal of OCA – The OUSD Board (or at least parts of it) reached a new low for dysfunction last week. They inadvertently approved a charter school renewal that they thought they had blocked.
School water fountains tested for lead content – UPDATE: Out of the 29 total water sources in the district, only six tested positive for traces of lead, although none of the sources exceeded the legal limit, according to EBMUD’s test results.
In Reversal, OUSD Officials Say Oakland Charter School’s Renewal Petition Was Approved – Last week, the Oakland Unified School District’s board didn’t muster enough votes to renew the charter petition for Amethods Oakland Charter Academy, one of the city’s main charter schools.
Petition started to put a library in every Oakland school where 30% of district’s libraries closed – A petition to put a high quality library in every Oakland public school began circulating on Monday asking that trustees find money to make that dream a reality.
Don’t Miss the Jan. 26 Deadline to Apply-Choose or Lose in Oakland’s Public Schools – The meek will not inherit the earth in Oakland’s system of public school choice. Given the likelihood of school closings, they may inherit the dirt of a shuttered school, and the scraps of opportunities left after others have chosen.
Elementary Schools That Asian-American Families Should Consider Based on the Latest Test Scores – Where you send your child to school is one of the most important decisions you can make. The new school quality data was released by the state recently, and I wanted to highlight some of the schools making progress with Oakland children, and encourage families to visit. There is and OUSD enrollment fair on 1/20 and you can also take a look at the schoolfinder tool to find local schools.
Tone Deafness, Lost Focus, and How OUSD’s Board Approved a Charter School and Didn’t Even Know It – OUSD’s Board of Education is a mess. It is so messy the board doesn’t even know how messy it is. The first meeting of the year was a joke, and not the funny kind. They gave themselves a raise, while schools are cut, and they inadvertently approved a charter renewal that some members were trying to block—and the they didn’t even know it.
Oakland school board elects new president, gets raise – In its first meeting of 2018, the Oakland Unified school board elected its first new president in three years and gave itself a $40-a-month raise less than a month after chopping millions from the district’s mid-year budget.
Those ‘symbolic’ raises Oakland school board gave itself really stink – I wasn’t the best math student, but I know the Oakland school board’s approval of a $39 per month raise for each of its members is a gross miscalculation. “It is verysmall, and it is symbolic,” board member Roseann Torres said at the Jan. 8 meeting.
S.F.’s Kindergarten Lottery: Do Parents’ Tricks Work? – To get their child into a public kindergarten, parents enter a lottery that blends their choices with a mysterious algorithm designed to give every child the opportunity to attend the school of their choice. A kindergartner here could be assigned to any of the city’s 72 elementary schools.
District finds teacher regularly harassed 14-year-old girl. He’s still teaching high schoolers – A longtime Woodcreek High School teacher with a history of inappropriate behavior was transferred but still employed in the classroom after a 14-year-old student complained that he often touched her inappropriately and flirted with her, according to documents obtained by The Sacramento Bee.
Redlands Unified says victims of sexual abuse were ‘negligent’ and partially ‘at fault’ – In reply to a lawsuit the district says victims of former Redlands High School teacher Kevin Kirkland were “negligent” or at fault for what happened to them, and “failed to use that degree of care and caution which a reasonably prudent person would have used under the same or similar circumstances,”
California needs to ensure that money aimed at low-income students actually gets to them – Good for Jerry Brown for fully funding the Local Control Funding Formula. Now he needs to make the program works as intended.
Can 600-plus California districts narrow the achievement gap? – As part of the California School Dashboard, the state’s new school accountability system, 1 in 4 school districts will receive assistance from county offices of education and the state to help improve the performance of groups of students who have done particularly poorly on criteria set by the state.
Best of the Rest
We Need a Place to Start Teaching Kids About Sexual Consent. And School Can Be It. I will tell you that when I read about Aziz Ansari’s “date” gone wrong, my first thought was, “This woman needs to learn how to say a clear, verbal no and leave the situation.”
Newly Discovered 1964 MLK Speech on Civil Rights, Segregation & Apartheid South Africa – In a Democracy Now! and Pacifica Radio Archives exclusive, we air a newly discovered recording of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On December 7, 1964, days before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, King gave a major address in London on segregation, the fight for civil rights and his support for Nelson Mandela and the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa.
You Call These “Public” Schools? Unconscionable Segregation in NYC’s Specialized High Schools – Segregation won another round in New York City’s most elite “public” schools. The admission numbers are out and they are pathetic. Black and Latino children make up 67.6 percent of the students in NYC schools, yet only 10 percent of the students were admitted to the selective high schools.
Lupe Ortiz-Tovar – 2018 CECA Alumni Award winner – Lupe O. Tovar possesses one of the strongest voices of alumni of foster care in the country. She has been active in Foster Care Alumni of America, founding local chapters in Arizona and Oklahoma, and serving on the national board of directors for 10 years.
Raising Money – Integration Charter Schools – What’s my New Year’s Resolution? What’s the hardest thing for me? Raise more money. Beg more. When The Verrazano Foundation needed to raise money, I called my teacher Roshi Bernie Glassman for advice.
How you can help
Click here to support Protect ICS Kids from Budget Cuts organized by Natalee Kēhaulani – Oakland Unified is facing another enormous budget shortfall. District level budget cuts are being shouldered by teachers and families, with each school being asked to cut on average $120 per student.