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Jailyn Anderson

Oakland Unified School District’s students gather for the All City Council Students Unions’ 9th Annual Youth Action Summit

On a Thursday, during school hours, students from middle and high schools across the Oakland Unified School District met to conduct business. Held at the First Unitarian Church of Oakland, students, teachers, and advocates gathered for the All City Council Students Unions’ 9th Annual Youth Action Summit. The theme this year was #StudentVoiceMatter: Building Real Partnership to Real Student Power.

Equity in Education panel brings Oaklanders together to discuss schools

On Thursday, a row of people carrying umbrellas gathered in downtown Oakland, standing in a long line going down the entire block, despite the spurts of rain. Although the people in line were smiling, they were here to conduct a serious conversation. The panel discussion, hosted by Lincoln, an organization that helps children and families through social programs, was titled “Equity in Education.” The free event invited members of the community to come together and discuss important topics affecting the…

Over 100 students awarded during Martin Luther King Oratorical Fest

Over 100 students were awarded medals during the final showcase of the 39th Martin Luther King Oratorical Fest. The performance categories this year ranged from famous to not-so-famous speeches, dramatic scenes, published poems and students’ original work. Each performer in the showcase was a finalist from their individual school’s competition.

Zella’s Soul Food Kitchen in Oakland

Zella’s Soul Food Kitchen was opened in October 2014, by Dionne Knox. Zella’s can be found in the right corner of the Mandela Food Cooperative, a worker-owned grocery store opened since 2009.

Young women learn tech skills at Girls Who Code club

In the meeting room at the Oakland Public Library’s Cesar Chavez Branch, girls grades 6 to 12 gather for their Tuesday club meeting. They remove their school backpacks and power on the laptops provided by the library. With some instruction from their club advisor, they immerse themselves in learning a new language: the language of coding. This Girls Who Code club is one of the hundreds nationwide. This particular club location was launched four years ago. During each school year,…

Oakland school board votes for $9 million in budget cuts

In a six to one vote, the Oakland Unified School District school board voted to cut $9 million from the district’s budget on Wednesday night. Earlier in the afternoon, members of the Oakland Education Association assembled at Lake Merritt to protest the proposed cuts, then marched down the streets toward La Escuelita Elementary School, where the board meeting would take place. Olivia Udovic, a parent and teacher at Oakland Montessori School in the Fruitvale neighborhood, marched proudly in the front…

The Town Kitchen offers job skills, second chances, to the formerly incarcerated

Fresh bread is baking in the oven. Feet shuffle swiftly along the kitchen floors. Chefs begin bagging and packing food to go. Two deliverers place big black boxes on carts to wheel to their vehicle. Inside each one are several neatly packaged white boxes filled with lunch orders. About seven people dance around the kitchen to assist them with the deliveries. Smooth 90’s R&B plays in the background while the staff works in unison. The chefs in this kitchen aren’t…

Oakland school district tests water at schools for lead

Following the discovery of lead in the water at McClymonds High School in August, water testing has begun throughout the entire Oakland Unified School District. Currently, 13 additional schools in the district have been reported to have lead in their water. At a school board meeting on November 8, Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell read from a statement regarding the status of lead of Oakland schools. “In August 2017, water safety concerns regarding the lead levels of water at McClymonds High School…

African American Female Excellence Program hosts first Black Girl Power Conference

The chant of “Black girl power!” chant echoed throughout a room filled with purple balloons and ribbons early Saturday morning. More than 100 girls and their mothers, teachers, mentors—and one father—filled an auditorium on the Mills College campus for the first Black Girl Power Conference hosted by the African American Female Excellence Program (AAFE). The AAFE is a new initiative from the Oakland Unified School District’s (OUSD) Office of Equity. The initiative’s goal is to increase the academic achievement of…

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