Blindsided by Budget Cuts /OUSD report

admin_general - Posted on 16 February 2022


By Nija Grant

The Oakland Unified School District plans to permanently close or merge 19 Black and Brown schools without any warning whatsoever. This is because enrollment has been going down with covid cases and they expect a lower budget within the next year or in the next few years. 

The adults and the youth are not only upset because the OUSD is closing and merging 19 Black and Brown schools. That is far from their liking, but they were blindsighted about the situation and are going to stay blindsighted about the situation until Mike Hutchinson revealed it to the public eye.

Lucretia Henderson said, "They're not only losing their education but they're also losing their support system, they're losing their friends, and they're losing their teachers. This is all a disservice.”

The Oakland Unified School District has claimed to need to slash $50,000 plus from next year's budget. However, Hutchinson insists that there is no budget deficit. He said, “What we are doing is going through a series of adjustments to free up more money to raise compensation for our staff going forward but we are not in a budget crisis. We have money in our reserves,” revealed Hutchinson.

The OUSD has had a history of closing schools in Black and Brown communities before. Because of the people on the front line who are in power to make these discussions, the OUSD has been lying about what has been truly happening with the schools. What the OUSD has not been telling us is that they are closing our schools because of their debt. Oakland has 80 schools with 33,000 students. While Stockton has 35,000 and only 48 schools, meaning more students and fewer schools. In addition, Stockton is giving more college students debt-free education than Oakland. The OUSD was given more than enough time to make these decisions about the schools,  and in addition, time to consult the people of the community about what will be happening. But why didn’t they?

Vanessa Gutierrez said, “They are not thinking about the people who are less fortunate than them.” I said, “Making the students, teachers, and staff feel undervalued and voiceless is going to bring a big issue to those on the other side.”

In my point of view, what the OUSD is doing to the schools is wrong all around because they are lying and trying to be quiet about a problem that needed to be publicly released a long time ago. I also feel like the past situations have been ignored and swept under the rug many times before. The people who know about deceitful behavior and are still choosing to keep their mouths shut are just as bad. 



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