Search The Tattler

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Its Official: Santa Fe School To Close

Oakland Schools Failure Ripple Effect:
Anna Yates Elementary School 
To Face Crush Of Parents

Oakland's Santa Fe Elementary School, on the Emeryville border, has been axed.  Emery's Anna Yates is sure to be impacted with a surge of inter-district transfers as parents scramble to seek alternatives for their children.
Re-posted from the Oakland Tribune

The verdict is in: Five Oakland elementary 

schools will close 


Updated: 10/27/2011 03:21:02 PM PDT
Most of the people who had packed the Oakland Technical
High School auditorium for the marathon session were long
gone by the time the school board made its decision, but a few
dozen people remained to hear the verdict.

"I can't say that I'm surprised, but I did hold out a little bit of hope,"
 said Pam Chinn-Scoffern, who teaches at Lakeview, one of the
five schools slated for closure.

The district administration has estimated the closures of Lakeview,
Lazear, Marshall, Maxwell Park and Santa Fe elementary schools
will result in a savings of roughly $2 million a year, or an additional
$50 for each student in Oakland Unified.

The restructuring plan also includes mergers that are already
underway: the small high schools on the Fremont and Castlemont
campuses in East Oakland; the conversion of Far West High School
in North Oakland into an academy of nearby Oakland Technical
High; and the merger of Barack Obama Academy, an alternative
middle school in East Oakland, with Community Day School.

Superintendent Tony Smith told the crowd that the district simply
can't fund or manage the number of schools as it operates -- nearly
100 for 38,000 students. In addition to a declining number of
students and reductions in state education funding, he said, the
district must repay the state $6 million each year for the $100
million bailout loans extended during the school district's 2003
financial meltdown and state takeover.

"Having too many underfunded schools is not a good strategy,"
Smith said.

But many urged the board to reject the plan, arguing that the
closure of historic neighborhood schools and the displacement
of 1,000 students and staff members was not worth $2 million.
Some questioned if the district would even save that much,
especially if it uses general fund dollars to help pay for the
students' transportation to their new schools.

Erica Persons, 8, was asleep just after 11 p.m. when the board
made the decision, with board members Alice Spearman and
Noel Gallo casting the dissenting votes. She and her friend
Donaven Kelley, 9, who attend Marshall Elementary School,
said they were saddened by the news.

"It's just hard to go away from a school you've been raised in,
really," Erica said.

Read Katy Murphy's Oakland schools blog Follow her at

No comments:

Post a Comment