January 12, 2018
OUSD Budget Cut
“The Oakland Unified School District’s Board of Education passes a multimillion-dollar midyear budget cut.” (NBC Bay Area). OUSD is already an under-resourced district. The pay for teachers and the money per student/ school is less than in other districts just a couple of miles away. Parents, teachers and students are frustrated. They’re frustrated because this $9 million budget cut is making teachers and students suffer.
Students are suffering from this cut because school supplies are being limited. In the article, “Oakland Students, Parents and Teachers are Rallying Against Proposed Budget Cuts” by Ali Tadayon, High senior Kaylyn Saechao, a student organizer with Oakland Kids First explains, “We students don’t get all of the basic needs and resources at school as it’s, and cutting the ones that we do have would make it an even bigger struggle for us to perform well academically” (Tadayon). This quote is explaining how Oakland students aren’t able to have certain materials they need to do well in class or school. The message that’s being sent to students is the community doesn’t value the youth in Oakland’s education. It shows the OUSD doesn’t value their students education or value them because they’re not giving funds that would help many students. Most importantly, the message being sent by the OUSD is Oakland students aren’t worth their money. This proves Oakland students are suffering from this proposal because they aren’t getting their education as they would normally be before the cut. Oakland students need their education, teachers have already finished school and college to get where they’re at, but students are now going to have to work harder; this is confirmed by one of my interviewees, a mother who lives in Oakland, she stated, “The students are suffering the most because the teachers already have their education and have went to college, the students are still learning and their supplies are being limited because of the budget cut” (woman in Oakland). Students suffer the most from this cut because they’ll have to work harder to learn because their supplies are being limited. It’s unfortunate students supplies are being limited because students might not be able to perform as well in school than they would if they had the supplies they needed.
This proposal also makes it harder for teachers to undergo evaluation and professional development training because less substitute teachers are going to be provided if they need to take breaks for personal reasons. The article also states, “There’s not enough teachers in the classrooms,” complained Aliyah Sulaiman, whose son attends an Oakland elementary school. “Our children’s education is slipping away” (BondGraham). This quote proves teachers are affected by the cut because the proposal is affecting teacher development. This matters because if less money is being invested in helping teachers develop, they aren’t going to be able to help teach students to their maximum potential. Also, the pay for teachers and the money per student/ school is less than in other districts just a couple of miles away. Teachers, who work in the OUSD, jobs are in jeopardy because of this cut. This is talked about by another interviewee, a woman who has worked in the OUSD for years, she said, “Teachers might be getting laid off, students are going to have to build new relationships with new teachers and the class sizes might be larger because there are less teachers” (woman in Oakland). This quote is saying, since teachers have a risk of getting laid off, other teachers are going to have to work harder because they’ll most likely have more students in their classes. This isn’t only puting teachers jobs at risk, it’s putting their families at risk because, even though teachers who work in OUSD aren’t getting paid much, if they were laid off, they would no longer have an income to help out their families.
Others may argue, it’s Oaklands fault there’s a budget cut. They might say students aren’t using supplies correctly or teachers were spending too much on unnecessary products and that’s the reason there’s a cut. But, I would say, even if those scenarios were true, I strongly believ cutting $9 million dollars from OUSD will be a solution, it makes people suffer more than it helps.
Overall, there are many issues the OUSD is facing and if they want to take a step closer to a solution, they’re going to have to listen to the voices of the people who are being affected.
BondGraham, Darwin. “Oakland School Board Members Apologize for Mid-Year Budget Cuts at Packed Board Meeting.” East Bay Express, East Bay Express, 28 Nov. 2017, www.eastbayexpress.com/SevenDays/archives/2017/11/28/oakland-school-directors-apologize-for-mid-year-budget-cuts-at-packed-board-meeting.
Parents are frustrated about the millions of dollars that are being taken away from Oakland schools. The cuts and freezing implemented by the district earlier have prevented staff from using funds to buy basic necessities like mops on paper towels. This source is credible because the East Bay Express is an Oakland-based weekly newspaper serving the Berkeley, Oakland, and East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area. It’s distributed throughout Alameda County and parts of Contra Costa County every Wednesday since 1978.
Tadayon, Ali. “Oakland students, parents, teachers rally against proposed budget cuts.” East Bay Times, East Bay Times, 28 Nov. 2017, www.eastbaytimes.com/2017/11/28/oakland-unified-students-parents-teachers-rally-against-proposed-cuts-to-schools/
This article is about how the budget cuts affect students because their supplies are being limited and it’s affecting the way they work. Students, parents and teachers are rallying together and protesting because they all agree the cuts are unfair to schools and the students. This source is credible because Ali Tadayon is an award-winning journalist covering Oakland for the Bay Area News Group.
Woman in Oakland, “How has the budget cut affected Oakland?” 10 Jan, 18
This adult answered this question by saying the students in Oakland are most affected. She went on by saying, since teachers might be getting laid off, students are going to have to build new relationships with new teachers and the class sizes might be larger because there are less teachers. This person’s a reliable source because she has worked for OUSD for years and she’s able to see the changes and how OUSD is going being affected because of the proposal.
Woman in Oakland. “Who suffers the most from the budget cut?” 10 Jan, 18
This Oakland natives answer to this question was the students. She said students were suffering the most because teachers already have their education and have went to college, the students are still learning and their supplies are being limited because of the cut. My interviewee’s a reliable source because she went to school in Oakland and has kids who go to school in Oakland so she has different views on who is suffering most from the cuts.
Tags: #BudgetCut #OUSD education LIfe Academy Oakland