Across the country, the conversation about access to a quality education has moved to the forefront. This is not a new conversation for Oaklanders, as we’ve been grappling with inequality in our school system for generations.
On Wednesday, March 20th, the Oakland School Board will address this conversation head-on by taking a crucial vote on the Community of Schools City Wide Plan. This plan sets the course for OUSD to interrupt educational inequities by creating a unified system of public schools that holds both district and charter leaders accountable for increasing quality, equity, and sustainability.
The City Wide Plan sets a bold vision for what we want students to learn, with specific strategies to address staffing, finances, buildings, and supports. It’s thoughtful and rooted in our local context:
- Determining a single measure of quality for all of our public schools,
- Ensuring every family has access to quality elementary, middle, and high schools in their neighborhood,
- Strengthening the district’s oversight and accountability of charter schools (and closing low-performing ones when they don’t meet quality standards),
- Partnering with high-quality charter schools to ensure they serve the high-needs population in our city,
- Shrinking and redesigning the central office,
- Developing collaborative opportunities for educators to share best practices, and
- Identifying how OUSD can support innovation and increase the number of high-quality school options within the district.
OUSD staff have created a plan that includes priorities Oaklanders have asked for and explicitly coordinates them with district policies so they are implemented in concert and not in conflict – and it cannot wait. OUSD leadership must be given the green light to move forward in a bold way through the plan’s emphasis on partnership over competition, proactive innovation over passive response to crisis, continuous improvement over punitive consequences, long-term fiscal sustainability, and stability over short-term fixes.
Click here to send a message to the Oakland School Board directors as they plan to vote on the City Wide Plan tomorrow. Click “comment” at the bottom left of “19-0160 Adoption by the Board of Education of Resolution No. 1819-0150 – Community of Schools – City Wide Plan.”
Sample message for you to share:
“Vote yes on the Community of Schools City Wide Plan. I believe in a society that is fair and just and where everyone, especially our children, are provided the opportunity to realize their full potential- we can’t lose any more time. We must get to work coordinating the many aspects of this plan and begin building a unified system of public schools that holds both district and charter leaders accountable for increasing quality, equity, and sustainability.”
Thank you for taking action on behalf of Oakland students!
Manager of Educator Community