Oakland Unified Budget Resources

GO has created this page for members of the community trying to gain a deeper understanding about OUSD’s fiscal challenges. The resources you will find here are a compilation of reports created about OUSD’s finances, including the district’s own communications, GO’s summaries/perspectives and local media analysis.

Making these budget cuts will be hard, but failing to make them will be even harder. Should the school board choose not to make these cuts, control of our schools could lie not in the hands of Superintendent Johnson-Trammell and the school board, but an unelected bureaucrat from Sacramento. We believe that serves no one, particularly our students.

We need to come together to advocate for significantly increased funding for public education in California – sign up here to stay updated on our work in that area so that you can join us in fighting for more for our students and schools.


Latest Budget Reduction Plan


Teacher Strike & Role of State Trustee in OUSD Financial Decisions

  • INFOGRAPHICS: GO’s Summary of Teacher Contract Fact-Finding Report (Full Report Here) (February 2019)
    • After the OUSD and OEA bargaining teams were unable to come to a contract agreement, the next step before the strike was able to be called was going to a 3rd party “Fact Finder” from the Public Employees Relations Board. This Fact Finder listened to each side an issued a non-binding recommendation earlier this month for the settlement based on what he believes the best possible settlement. Read the latest updates on the strike in our Strike Resource Center
  • Who is the OUSD State Trustee/What does that person do? (GO Summary of State Receivership)
    • Because OUSD is still under partial state receivership due to not yet having finished paid the loan received from the state when the district went bankrupt in 2003, for the last 16 years there has been an appointed State Trustee who, according to the district, “maintains veto authority over financial decisions that might imperil the stability of the OUSD”. During the current strike on Sunday, February 24th, our current state trustee, Chris Learned, has stated, “Under my authority as the fiscal oversight trustee for OUSD, I will stay and/or rescind any agreement that would put the district in financial distress. A 12% salary increase would do just that. What the District has on the table now is what the District can afford.” It is anticipated that OUSD will continue to have a state trustee with veto power over financial decisions through 2026, when the loan from the state is projected to have been fully paid back by OUSD.

Independent Reports about OUSD’s Budget

  • INFOGRAPHIC: GO Summary of Alameda County Civil Grand Jury Report (Full Report) (July 2018)
    • The Alameda Civil Grand Jury took a look at OUSD’s financial crisis and as reported in this  East Bay Time Article:  “Oakland Unified School District’s years-long budget crisis was made worse by the opening of two new schools without proper funding in the 2017-18 school year, the Alameda County civil grand jury has concluded. The district is also operating too many schools than it has money for, the grand jury said in a report”.
  • Top 5 Concerning Quotes from FCMAT Report (Full report) (June 2018)
    • In January 2018, the Alameda County Office of Education asked FCMAT to provide on-site technical assistance to OUSD. This report, released 6 months later, captures FCMAT’s experience conducting that work.
  • August 2017 FCMAT report GO Summary (Full report) (August 2017)
    • In the spring of 2017, the OUSD school board contracted with FCMAT to come into the district and to do an evaluation of why/how the district had suddenly found themselves on the brink of bankruptcy. This report identifies 8 areas of significant concern related to OUSD’s financial management.

State Relief Bill (AB 1840)

  • AB 1840 GO Summary and FAQ, (OUSD Explainer) (Full Bill) (September 2018)
    • In September 2018, Governor Brown signed AB1840. The headline for this bill is that the state could provide OUSD millions of dollars over three years to help spread out the pain of the district making significant cuts all at once. This money is not a loan, so it will not need to be paid back, and it is also not guaranteed. Accessing the money comes with the expectation that OUSD will continue making improvements on overall budgeting.
  • VIDEO: Breaking down AB1840 (September 2018)
    • A four-minute video from Nima Tahai, GO’s Director of Educator Leadership, explaining how AB 1840 funding could work.
PRIVACY POLICY site design by twiststudio