Jorge Lerma officially took his seat on the Board of Education on November 27, 2023, after being elected by the voters of District 5 earlier in the month.
Born and raised in Oakland, Lerma calls himself a lifelong educator and teacher. He currently serves as Co-Chair of Oakland’s Children’s Initiative (Measure AA) Oversight Commission, funding and overseeing the implementation of the First Five and Oakland Promise programs.
Director Lerma is a member of the African American Latino Alliance, (AALA) and President of the Educational Coalition for Hispanics in Oakland (ECHO) an organization comprised of parents, teachers, instructional aides, and paraprofessionals who have served or are familiar with the needs of all students from Oakland’s native, Indigenous, and immigrant communities. He’s a Bilingual Bicultural Mexican American (Chicano) who attended Oakland schools throughout his early educational career, from kindergarten through high school. His two children also each attended OUSD schools.
Lerma has two lifelong teaching credentials (elementary and secondary) and a Master’s Degree in Administration and Supervision from Cal State University East Bay. He is one of the co-founders and creators of Centro Infantil de La Raza, La Escuelita School, and the Latino Honor Roll program in the District. He previously served as teacher and site leader at Centro Infantil, assistant principal at Garfield Elementary School and the former Havenscourt Middle School (now CCPA). He then served as Principal at La Escuelita and Highland School (now Highland Community School).
A graduate of Oakland High School, Lerma is also the District 5 representative to the City’s Community Policing Advisory Board. He says he’s committed to working for all students across Oakland.