OUSD TK Information

My partner and I are looking at TK programs in Oakland for 2022 for our daughter, and neither of us are from the United States, so we are learning about the school system and it's a little overwhelming. We are looking at schools outside of our local school and need an after-school program. We speak Spanish at home, and would like a Spanish program, but open to English speaking schools too. Does anyone have any insight into experiences of applying to TK's outside of your local school, chances in the lottery of actually getting a school you want in a different neighborhood, and school experiences that you loved or would say not to apply to. Really any information would be helpful. Thank you in advance. 

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RE: OUSD TK Information ()

If you end up living in East Oakland (which is really "south" - don't get me started) or Central/East then I think you should consider our school - ASCEND. It stands for A School Cultivating Responsibility and Nurturing Diversity. It's TK-8 and many of the families speak Spanish. It used to be one of the "small, autonomous schools" in OUSD but they decided to pull out of OUSD (due to some strong differences of opinion related to diversity, curriculum autonomy, and many other serious concerns) and they're now a charter school. Not sure how your "politics" are about charter schools, but here's a warning: it's a very divisive and contentious issue here. It's quite complex and I have strong feelings about it (and about how societies sometimes decide to "collectively have the same opinion" on certain complex topics and get polarized over them), so I'll save that for another day.

I recommend ASCEND because it started in my living room 20 years ago and so it has a special place in my heart, both of our daughters went there, my wife and friends were the founders and I know them to be amazing educators, the primary driving force for them was to create a more racially equitable school for Oakland kids, it's an arts-integrated school and they do high-level art learning, and a lot of their learning is quite high-level. There are some serious flaws of this school too, though. Feel free to contact me for me info.

I also think that  Manzanita SEED could be great. They have a more diverse population than ASCEND and since it's a dual emersion school then kids are speaking Spanish in school and keeping that language strong. I believe SEED is TK-5.

Good luck! And feel free to reach out.

~Mailisha