Meeting Time: September 11, 2019 at 4:00pm PDT
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Agenda Item

S.-3 19-1827 Adoption by the Board of Education of Resolution No. 1920-0156C - Adopting Proposal To Merge The Kaiser Elementary School And Sankofa Elementary School Programs At The Sankofa Campus.

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    Megan Keever at September 11, 2019 at 3:32pm PDT

    I'm a Peralta parent (K & 2nd). I strongly disagree w/introducing a last minute amendment that includes Peralta at this point in the process. It obfuscates a respectful and transparent process by minimizing any say the community may have. Please do not circumvent the public involvement by including a surprise amendment in tonight's vote. If the current proposal is deemed unsatisfactory, vote it down and re-open the evaluation process to find one that is.

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    Jeff Burger at September 11, 2019 at 3:17pm PDT

    I'm absolutely against a last minute amendment that introduces an alternate scenario whether it's Peralta Elementary or any other school. We need to have a respectful and transparent process for all involved. The back room politics are not in service of the faculty, students and families from these schools. A vote should take place, on the recommendation as it stands. If the current proposal is deemed so unsatisfactory, vote it down and re-open the evaluation process to find one that is.

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    Bryan H at September 11, 2019 at 3:02pm PDT

    As a parent with twins in their first month of Kindergarten, I am shocked that there is a chance of a last minute push to vote on merging Peralta with Sankofa. While I am opposed in general to the idea of merging the two, I'm completely outraged to hear that this is going to be slipped through at the last minute. It is absolutely unfair to the Peralta and Sankofa communities to not give time and space to see what the real world impact will be of this. Students need stability, this is not that.

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    Peralta Parent at September 11, 2019 at 2:21pm PDT

    I have 2 children. One of them is going to Peralta, another one will go to Peralta if the OUSD doesn't ruin the school. Leave this school out of your mess or lots of us will have to homeschool.

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    Darin Smith at September 11, 2019 at 12:49pm PDT

    I understand the need for change in North Oakland elementary schools. I believe that restructuring the enrollment and facilities to save costs makes sense, given the district’s finances. I believe there may be good reasons for re-structuring enrollment for my children’s school, Peralta, as well as Sankofa and Kaiser. But mostly I believe that OUSD has done an extremely poor job of communicating the reasons, process, and desired and expected outcomes of such changes, and must do better.

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    Michael Gonzales at September 11, 2019 at 11:15am PDT

    I strongly oppose this last minute back door amendment to now reintroduce peralta in some type of last minute merger. Peralta has been functioning as a strong neighborhood school for quite some time. As I understand certain parents would like to entertain the idea of a merger. I can respect this and would like to suggest maybe submitting requests for the ability to transfer to Sankofa and assist the district in its plan to accomplish its goals.

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    cory borovicka at September 11, 2019 at 10:57am PDT

    I am a Peralta parent concerned about a possible amendment to include Peralta in this plan. Peralta parents have respectfully attended meetings with OUSD to understand options, have responded to surveys by the Peralta PTA and OUSD (results of both of expressed significant opposition to including Peralta in the proposed merger), and have been told by OUSD that Peralta is NOT part of the plan. Do not confuse our assumption that Peralta was no longer impacted for support of the proposed merger.

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    Kayla Walsh at September 11, 2019 at 10:56am PDT

    We can create better learning opportunities for all of our children, but this can only be done with respect and trust. The Peralta community has been told that you are introducing a last minute amendment. This breaks the trust of the community you are impacting and shows a deep disrespect for all the parents, students, and educators involved. How can you expect this process to be successful when it seems to based in distrust and a lack of respect? You are setting us all up for failure.

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    Christine Martin at September 11, 2019 at 10:48am PDT

    I ask that you heed Principal Gisele Hendrie's letter and please give Peralta Elementary the courtesy of a democratic, clear and considered process. Adding Peralta into Cohort 2 without proper public notification and study is short-sighted and hasty. Please use your office to promote trust and respect for the people you serve.

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    Marissa Hereso at September 11, 2019 at 10:43am PDT

    It is difficult to state a position when all of the terms of the merger are not clearly stated. It was brought to my attention that board members are considering adding an amendment to include a scenario that includes Peralta (our child's school). What does this scenario entail? A last minute addition and complete lack of transparency about it is disrespectful to all the students and communities that would be impacted. Feels like a sure-fire way to break trust and shut us out of the process.

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    Megan Borovicka at September 11, 2019 at 10:26am PDT

    I am a Peralta parent concerned about a possible amendment to include Peralta in this plan. Peralta parents have respectfully attended meetings with OUSD to understand options, have responded to surveys by the Peralta PTA and OUSD (results of both of expressed significant opposition to including Peralta in the proposed merger), and have been told by OUSD that Peralta is NOT part of the plan. Do not confuse our assumption that Peralta was no longer impacted for support of the proposed merger.

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    Erin Lenhert at September 11, 2019 at 10:24am PDT

    I have 2 children at Peralta. I don't think the merger of Sankofa and Kaiser sounds like it's the best solution for anyone. Many parents at Peralta are open to a merger, but please don't spring it on us in an amendment! Allow transparency in this process or you will lose the trust of the community. There is rampant misunderstanding and misinformation going around right now. Peralta parents want the chance to work with you on this.

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    Lisa Archer at September 11, 2019 at 9:31am PDT

    I fully support the goals of making a quality education available for all our children. But adding Peralta into the process at the last minute with zero notice to the community would be outrageous. The survey results show teachers will leave, many of the parents who put in time and resources will move their children and greater equity will not be the outcome. If Peralta is brought back into the process, please do so transparently and not in a way that breaks the trust of the community.

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    Jenny Wong at September 11, 2019 at 9:25am PDT

    I support the merger of Sankofa and Kaiser. The goal is to save money and this is a good option since both school are not full. I oppose putting a last moment amendment to include Peralta after a decision was made to NOT include Peralta. Why go through the process then? Merging Kaiser and Sankofa is the only logical decision given what the OUSD wants to do. I do agree that the northern Oakland schools should share resources somehow when the Kaiser and Sankofa merger is complete.

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    Kwei Wu at September 11, 2019 at 9:15am PDT

    I support agenda proposal but oppose any amendments to include Peralta. The Peralta community has actively engaged in the conversation over the summer and was told no longer being considered for a merger. It would be unfair and unwise to include Peralta in the last minute and corrupt the transparency and trust that the district is trying to achieve.

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    Robin Leffert at September 11, 2019 at 9:10am PDT

    I'm very concerned and disheartened about the inequality that exists in our schools and community along racial and socioeconomic lines, and am aware that it hurts all children and families. A merger that involves Peralta feels like the perfect opportunity to make some honest change for the better. Excluding Peralta from a merger will allow inequity to become further entrenched, and it will become more and more difficult to provide the experiences and education we all want for our children.

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    Jennifer Altman at September 11, 2019 at 8:25am PDT

    I strongly oppose the merger of Peralta and Sankofa. Peralta is a highly functioning school with culture of participation that has been built up over time. We moved to Berkeley but chose to keep our two children together at Peralta. We will send our kids to berkeley schools if the merger takes place. I am curious to know, What does Sankofa want? Perhaps its more equitable for Peralta and the school district to help Sankofa on its own terms. I would be happy to donate monthly to sankofa.

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    Chris Chun at September 11, 2019 at 8:23am PDT

    A merged Peralta and Sankofa would bring the greatest benefit to the whole community. Peralta and Sankofa both would be enriched by the sharing of resources and inclusion of everyone in the neighborhood. It's also the right thing to do. Do it thoughtfully and with input from all contingents.

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    Raquel Dillon at September 11, 2019 at 6:21am PDT

    Merge Peralta and Sankofa, but do it with proper notice, resources and time.
    My child will be in 5th grade at the time of the proposed merger under Option 3. I believe that merging Sankofa and Peralta is the best option for the greatest number of OUSD students. Peralta should do the hard work to share its strengths and resources. Don't make the Sankofa community merge with the Kaiser people who don't want them.

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    Yari Mander at September 11, 2019 at 5:40am PDT

    What Joy Gray said is exactly how I feel so I will echo their words. I too am opposed to any closure of any Oakland public schools, but to reintroduce Peralta without any notice at the last minute without notice to the community would be an outrage. Read the surveys: the teachers will leave, the parents who help fund the school will pull their children, and equity will not be achieved. This move would destroy a unique and wonderful school community and would be an outrage.

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    Joy Gray at September 10, 2019 at 10:50pm PDT

    Completely opposed to the closure of any Oakland schools, but to re-introduce Peralta at the 11th hour without notice to the Community, after telling us that we were no longer part of the merger plan, is egregious and a bald faced lie. The teachers will leave, the parents who financially fund the school will pull their children and the goal of equality will most certainly not be met. Read the surveys. They don't lie. Board members apparently do.

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    Jeanna Steele at September 10, 2019 at 10:48pm PDT

    I support the merger of Kaiser and Sankofa. I strongly OPPOSE the merger of Peralta with any other school in OUSD. Please do not destroy our school. We will lose our teachers and the community we have worked so hard to build. Thank you.

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    Peter Nico at September 10, 2019 at 10:43pm PDT

    Support the agenda proposal as written but strongly oppose any amendments or alterations of the district’s recommendations. The district’s recommendation comes via an open, if difficult, process of engagement. Last minute surprise dealing by the board would be anathema to the stated values of engagement and transparency and further erode faith in and commitment to ousd.

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    Heather Bakke at September 10, 2019 at 10:13pm PDT

    Do not include Peralta in any plan to merge schools. The entire teacher body is opposed to the idea, along w a significant portion of the parent population.