Monthly Archives: December 2015

What the New School Options Guide Got Right

The Oakland Unified School District took on an ambitious effort to release its School Options guide and include all of our public schools which includes both our traditional public schools and our charter schools. In the publication, there was a mistake made when an internal editing process changed the term Special Day Class to Special Education which made a bunch… Read more →

Photo by Howard Lake, CC-licensed.

Let’s Make Our Voices Heard on Improving School Enrollment in Oakland (En Español)

Part of what makes Oakland great is how our city celebrates equity and diversity. But there is a major part of public education in our city that does not fit with our values: the way families find and enroll in Oakland’s public schools. The current process is unfair, disproportionately disadvantaging parents who work multiple jobs, have children with special needs… Read more →

Choice, Equity, and Transportation in Oakland

More school choice, by itself will not lead to more equitable outcomes.  Indeed “choice” for underserved families is often one of those platitudes, like “justice” whose airy description bears little resemblance to the ground level realities. So as Oakland potentially moves to a common enrollment system that will ideally increase the numbers of families making choices, we need to deal… Read more →

Making Choice Work for ALL Families- We Need an App for That

My friend’s grandson was struggling in his elementary school, a very smart kid, he had regressed over the last couple of years.  He can be a tough kid, he has seen more than he should have, and holds a reservoir of anger and sadness. He has been labeled at his school as “the bad kid”, they don’t give him the… Read more →

In common enrollment who is “the other guy’s” kid?

Our current enrollment system is one of the most inequitable ways to assign schools.  Families with financial resources move to neighborhoods with good local schools and/or send their kids to private schools at middle or high.  Families with greater cultural capital and time can review and apply to the range of charters or look for an in district transfer, and… Read more →

Fixing School Accountability to Drive Equity

  The systems we have created to judge schools are now one of the prime drivers of increasing inequality.  Anyone who has worked in schools can see this.  Right now we judge schools mostly by the percentage of students who reach a pretty high proficiency bar.  We don’t really measure or value growth.  And we particularly don’t measure it for… Read more →

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