Oakland charter schools

We are moving into Oakland this spring with a fourth and fifth grader. Our neighborhood school is not very good so we are thinking of trying for a transfer into Berkeley schools or to get into the charter schools. We are both interested in recommendations and even more importantly if there is a secret/trick/burreaucratic tick to navigate the system.

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RE: Oakland charter schools ()

Welcome! The first thing I'd do is find out more about your neighborhood school; look beyond test scores and you may be pleasantly surprised. If not, the first call to make is to the Oakland Unified Student Assignment Center. OUSD class sizes expand in fourth grade and many schools that are hard to get into for kindergarten have spaces in fourth and fifth grades as a result, so you may have some choices within the District that you are happy with. The sooner you get on the waitlist, the better, as enrollment for next year is already underway. If you need a spot immediately, you may have even better options since mid-year openings are not always filled (and will then get to continue at that school next year once enrolled). Charter schools have already run their lotteries for next year, but may also be more likely to have unexpected openings at those grade levels. It is extremely unlikely that you will get a transfer into Berkeley schools unless you are a teacher in the Berkeley school district; the bar is very high for granting transfers and Berkeley schools are currently overcrowded. Good luck!

RE: Oakland charter schools ()

I encourage you to give Oakland schools a chance.  We have been extremely happy with our local public school (Sequoia in the Dimond District)--I believe it is one of the most (if not the most) diverse school in the district in terms of both ethnicity and economics.  Oakland schools vary widely in terms of size, educational quality, ethnic diversity, etc.  If you explore the schools you are likely to find one that fits your needs.  While there are many neighborhood kids at our school there are also kids from all over the city.  And the teachers at our school are really amazing--they have done a great job of keeping our gifted child academically challenged and loving school.  I would imagine that at grades 4 & 5, it shouldn't be too hard to find a placement in a school you and your kids will be happy with. 

A happy Oakland public school Mama

RE: Oakland charter schools ()

You are not limited to your neighborhood school so I recommend you check with OUSD about your options. There are several excellent Oakland public elementary schools. My daughter attended Kaiser Elementary (not our neighborhood school) and it was a fantastic experience.