Search Results: Sankofa Academy

Former Lakeview Elementary parents and students adjust to new schools

Zarina Ahmad, principal of Piedmont Avenue Elementary in Oakland, put extra effort this year into creating a bright first day of school. She and her staff pasted a class list to the outside wall, with a photo of each teacher. Big orange cones separated children by their grades. Teachers ran a short pep rally, called the “Line Up to Learn.” Uniformed Oakland firemen welcomed kids into the school.

Q&A: Meet new Oakland Education Association president Trish Gorham

With the new school year approaching, Oakland North sits down with the newly hired Oakland Education Association (OEA) president, Trish Gorham. In this wide-ranging interview, the new head of the teachers’ union discusses school closures, the small schools movement, inequity among Oakland schools, the Lakeview protest, the challenges facing Oakland’s teachers and much more.

Oakland parents on school closures: Where do we go?

Three weeks after the OUSD board voted 5-2 to close five elementary schools—Lakeview, Lazear, Marshall, Maxwell Park and Santa Fe—and relocate or merge several other schools, parents and staff affected by the closures are working to figure out what they will do. Their array of “options,” which will be handled by “transition coordinators,” includes no guarantees.

OUSD school closures vote Wed follows years of creating small schools, then having to pay for them

The Oakland Unified School District’s controversial proposal to close five elementary schools this fall, and more in coming years, follows a multi-year program of encouraging small small schools–subdividing bigger facilities into multiple smaller ones, each with fewer students and a more intimate climate. But funding and enrollment changes have pushed the district to what promises to be an emotional meeting and vote Wednesday night.

2010: Oakland North’s year in photos

From covering Jean Quan’s surprise win in Oakland’s mayoral election to attending graffiti art exhibitions; from covering Oakland Tech football to talking to undocumented teens hoping for the passage of the DREAM Act — if it happened in Oakland, our reporters were there. Click through to see some of our favorite photos from the year.

Oakland students, administrators try organic school lunches

“I put love into this food,” said Lawana Wyatt, who has worked with food services in Oakland for the past 13 years, as she instructed a member of her staff on how much food to add to each plate when the students arrived. Although Wyatt is enthusiastic about school lunch on any given day, she knew that Thursday’s meal was really something special. “It’s not every day that we can get organic food,” she said. “I think it’s a good idea. I really hope the kids come.”

Teachers strike Thursday, return to bargaining next week

A majority of Oakland’s 2,339 teachers and 38,826 students were expected to be out today due to the strike but district spokesperson Troy Flint said he didn’t expect to have final numbers until Monday. Teachers’ complaint is that they have not received a raise since 2003, and despite two years of contract negotiations with the district, will not be offered a raise for the 2010-2011 school year either.

Oakland teachers strike for higher wages, smaller classes

Early Thursday morning, Oakland teachers went on strike, calling for a pay raise and a reduction in class sizes. As early as 6 am, teachers gathered—equipped with coffee, jackets, and beanies to withstand the chilly morning weather—and started to picket in front of their schools. The strike follows two years of failed negotiations between the Oakland Education Association, which represents teachers as well as school nurses, counselors and other staff, and the Oakland Unified School District. The teachers have been working…

Protests and dueling numbers mark schools meeting

Nearly 100 teachers picketed and leafleted last night’s school board meeting, pleading for a contract and better wages, while the Oakland district countered with its own flyers and warnings about certain schools that could be closed or turned into charters.