Report Renews Urgency, Drives Conversations on Equity in Oakland
June 30, 2017

The Oakland Achieves Partnership, which includes PIE Network member GO Public Schools, recently released Informing Equity: Student Need, Spending, and Resource Use in Oakland’s Public Schools. The study, created in partnership with Education Resource Strategies (ERS), is described as “first of its kind” for its depth and detail related to the operations of both district-run and charter public schools in Oakland. In commissioning the study, the Oakland Achieves Partnership sought to build a shared fact base for Oakland stakeholders to have better informed conversations about investments in education in the city, particularly related to equity.

“For anyone who cares about educational equity, this report raises significant questions for public schools, district-run and charters. What we see are significant variation still in how Oakland’s public schools – both district-run and charter – are using resources to meet our dual needs for greater quality and equity,” said Ash Solar, Executive Director, GO Public Schools Oakland.

The report examines data from district-run and charter schools for the 2014-15 school year across three key dimensions: student need, resource levels, and resource use. Partners hope this data will drive conversations around, among other things:

  • Ensuring that school spending matches student need by exploringe opportunities for both the district and charter sectors to serve a more equitable percentage of students with higher needs, including needs related to special education, incoming proficiency and “late-entry” students.
  • Changing the state law that caps the revenue charter schools can receive based on their home district’s limit.
  • Articulating a city-wide strategy on the number and mix of district-run and charter schools to allow schools to operate at a financially-sustainable size so that as a community Oakland is using its limited public education resources to best serve children in the classroom.

To connect with a colleague at GO Public Schools or ERS, please reach out.

Sarah Grunewald

Sarah is PIE Network's Deputy Executive Director, Program Strategy

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