Dirk Tillotson

NYC’S Integration Policy That Can Work in Oakland

The basics of desegregation are simple.  It just takes will.  NYC’s gifted and talented programs and the specialized high schools are some the most segregated classrooms in the City.  And despite a plethora of studies and plans, little has changed in recent years. The most exclusive public schools, the gateways to real mobility, have largely excluded low income students of… Read more →

Superintendent Wilson’s Legacy in Oakland

News broke last week that Oakland Unified’s superintendent, Antwan Wilson was moving on to become the new school chief in DC.  This has been a tumultuous couple of years in Oakland, marked at times by divisive rhetoric and deadlocks, but also some real progress that will last beyond this superintendent. While the media and advocates have tended to focus on… Read more →

Make Oakland Better by Taking the “Two Tour Pledge”

Change starts with us, it always has, and always will. No place is this more real than in school segregation, where thousands of individual choices tend to reinforce racial and class separation and continue the cleavages emanating from America’s original sin of slavery. And for too long, the hard work of racial progress has fallen on Black and Brown folks,… Read more →

Oakland school’s chief Antwan Wilson to be named D.C. schools chancellor

According to the Washington Post’s Emma Brown, D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser is expected to announce superintendent of Oakland California schools Antwan Wilson, as the next D.C. school’s chancellor. The nomination comes after city officials resolve that an outsider could be the best solution to addressing withstanding issues affecting D.C. schools. Between completely closing the slowly narrowing achievement gaps among… Read more →

After the Election- The New “The Talk”

Election day hurt bad, it still hurts.  I was in two Oakland schools.  One in the West, and one in Fruitvale.  Little girls in hijabs lined up alongside voters in one school.  And in the other school, which is 60% English language learners it was picture day, beautiful site with little kids beaming in the best dresses, little ties on,… Read more →

Rhetorical Education Wars From the Right and Left

Political language… is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. George Orwell Words matter.  What we call something affects public support for it. Is a medical meeting, “end of life counseling” or a “death panel”, the descriptions matter   So it’s not a coincidence, that we see Republican rhetoric… Read more →

Beyond “Safe” Spaces for LGBTQ Students, the State, the School, and You

Recent events echo, and remind us of the hate directed against the LGBTQ community, while quieter pain, often equally devastating and more widespread permeates the halls of most schools.  Schools need to be safe places for every child and they aren’t.  You can check the stats, LGBT high school students report hearing an average of 26 anti-LGBT slurs per day, 1/3rd… Read more →

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