Quick, which ethnic group had the highest dropout rate and lowest A-G course completion in Oakland Unified? I bet you are wrong…It’s Pacific Islanders according to OUSD’s latest balanced scorecard.
Who had the lowest cohort graduation rates of boys of color? Wrong again, according to an OFCY report it is Native American boys (38%), followed by Pacific Islanders (39%).
Strangely some of this may come from the success of Oakland’s Office of African American Male Achievement and targeted programs to increase achievement for those students, pushed by an advocacy community and, at times, public and media interest.
I say strangely because no group wants to be in the lead at the oppression olympics, and while just over 1 of 3 Native American boys can expect to graduate, just over half of Black boys will at 52%, and that’s not anything to celebrate.
But the relative success and the improvements in the outcomes for African American boys are something to study and think about replicating.
One size does not fit all students, and, without relying on stereotypes, different students often have different barriers, and need different solutions. So what about partnering with EBAYC on a Pacific Islander Achievement Initiative, or the Native American Health Center and American Indian Child Resource Center on one for our Native children?
We have a long way to go in Oakland, but we are making progress. And every long journey begins with a single step. Now that the data is pointing out problems, what road(s) will we take?
Here is the LCAP Scorecard Summary itself