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Oakland Unified School District

Black Thriving Summit

September 16, 2022 Fall Racial Justice, Equity & Healing Summit on Professional Learning Day!

The Fall 2022 Summit will focus on "Black Students, Families & Educators Thriving in Our Collective Joy" organized in partnership with members of the Black Students & Families Thriving Taskforce, the George Floyd Design Team, and the Black Thriving Working Group of OUSD's Racial Justice & Healing Taskforce.

All OUSD staff, family and student leaders, and community partners are invited to come learn together, dialogue, and take action to improve and strengthen our systems and support for Black students, families and educators in OUSD.

September 16th PD Day is one of three designated opportunities for teachers and staff to complete foundational academic, social-emotional, and anti-racist learning topics:

  • We encourage educators who have not completed their core academic foundational sessions, to choose from the make-up “intensives” to be posted on Teacher Central and the OUSD Professional Learning Calendar on Friday, September 2nd. (Note: The full Standards and Equity Institute and GLAD/ALLAS institutes will be offered again in summer of 2023.)
  • Educators and staff who have not yet completed their antiracist learning sessions, please choose from the Racial Justice Equity and Healing (RJEH) sessions below.
  • Classified and support staff not participating in site-based morning PD, please attend the RJEH morning session.

Sessions are aligned to OUSD's Black Thriving Indicator Framework:

  • Physically & Emotionally Healthy
  • Feeling Empowered & Engaged
  • Feeling Safe and a Sense of Belonging
  • Academically Prepared
  • Loved and Affirmed
  • Opportunities for Rich and Diverse Experiences
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{ Professional Learning }

9am-12pm > Opening Session & Disrupting Anti-Black Racism

[ Virtual For All OUSD Staff Not in Site PDs ]

12:30-2pm > Workshop Sessions #1 [ Virtual ]

2:15-3:45pm > Workshop Sessions #2 [ Virtual ]

{ Community Gathering }

4:30-6:30pm > OUSD Black Joy Gathering! [ In-Person ]

OUSD Family Leader Equity & Anti-Racism Institute flyer

All OUSD staff who are not participating in school site professional learning on this morning of Professional Learning Day are asked to attend this virtual session to ground in a common framework for disrupting anti-Black racism and to discuss amongst colleagues how we can disrupt anti-Black racism in our roles and daily work.

9:00-9:40am > Opening Grounding & Student and Family Voices

9:45-11:15am > Disrupting the "4 C" Cycle of Anti-Black Racism

11:20-12:00pm > Role-Alike Strategies for Disrupting Anti-Black Racism

Workshops 1

Please Note: Levels are based on your mastery of the workshop topic.

Building Joyful School Conditions for Black Students

Disrupting the '4 C' Cycle of Anti-Black Racism 

This session will be repeated from the morning, so that staff in morning site professional learning can take this foundational workshop.

Facilitators:  Quetzal Education Group - Dani Wadlington, Director of Antiracist Math Instruction; Jaz Hudson, Healer and Community Organizer

Participant Level: All levels of people who already accept that racism exists.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Name and categorize 4 different types of expressions of anti-Black racism and anti-Blackness. Naming is important in order to disrupt when it happens. 
  • Identify expressions of anti-Blackness in their work and reflect upon our areas of growth. 
  • Practice some ways to begin disrupting these expressions in self and others.

Abolition in Education: Past, Present and Future

Facilitators:  Chela Delgado, OUSD Ethnic Studies Team

Participant Level: Emerging & Developing

Learning Outcomes:

  • PAST: In this workshop, we will share some history of policing in schools and the movement to end our policing practices in OUSD.
  • PRESENT: Together, we will explore inspiring abolitionist teaching and practices in the present day including the work of the Black Organizing Project, Anti-Police Terror Project, Woke Kindergarten, and more.
  • FUTURE: If our dream is abolitionist education, how do we get there? We will take space to imagine the possibilities of what we can do now for the future we want.

Black Joy & Thriving in the Classroom

Advancing Disability Justice in OUSD: Strategy Session

Facilitators:  Cintya Molina, Office of Equity; Samantha Fenwick, Office of Equity Family Engagement Network 3; David Cammarata, Special Education; Melisha Linzie, Engagement Specialist, Special Education 

Participant Level: Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify initial steps for launching a Disability Justice Learning Group for OUSD staff.
  • Participants in the session would help to identify personal, cultural, and institutional barriers that must be understood to combat the intersecting ableism and racism that OUSD disabled Black students and other students of color face. They will also offer initial ideas for how to organize the group.
  • Reflect on strategic questions:
    • How might a lack of attention to ableism undermine our anti-racist work?
    • What is getting in the way of centering disabled Black students and other students of color in OUSD?
    • What shifts in mindset must we make to center disabled students of color?
    • What systemic barriers do you see at various levels (school, district, community, regional, etc.) that we would need to understand and explain?
    • What relationships do we need so that we can take on this learning as a district?

Centering Black Children in Early Education: Cultivating the Genius Within

Facilitators:  Dr. LaWanda Wesley, Black Women Collective in Early Childhood Education (BWECC)

Participant Level: Emerging, Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

It is imperative that young Black preschool and Transitional Kindergarten grade level children/students be engaged in culturally affirming care and learning settings. Ideally, these settings will build upon their existing genius to scaffold their inherent learning gifts and competencies towards the next level of their growth and development.

Workshop participants will:

  • Understand Dr. Gholdy Muhammad’s historically responsive framework related to 1)  identity,  2) skills, 3) intellectualism, and 4) criticality to support the next learning outcome uplifted by the National Black Child Agenda report (2021, p.9)

  •  Engage in peer-to-peer discussion to identify specific classroom strategies that builds on the following Black culturally affirming strategies for young children/student to include:

    • Black children have strong social skills, especially cooperation during play.

    • Black children have strong oral narrative and storytelling skills that are part of their cultural roots and supportive of their learning.

    • More Black children ages 3-5 are able to read words in a book compared to other children.

Workshops 2 Flyer

Loving School Cultures & Affirming Belonging

Black Girls Rising: Inspiring Excellence and Activating Achievement in OUSD's African American Female Scholars

Facilitators:  African American Female Excellence of OUSD’s Office of Equity - Mother-Daughter Team:

  • Zarina Ahmad - 30 +Year Award-winning OUSD Principal & Veteran Teacher

  • Iminah Ahmad - AAFE Co-founder & Program Manager

Participant Level: All Levels - Emerging, Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Educators will be empowered to better support Black Female scholars through culturally relevant, self esteem and SEL enhanced teaching practices.

  • Participants will gain insight to further foster an anti-racist, growth-mindset lens in their teaching practice.

Building Safe & Loving School Language for Black Students — Addressing Racial Slurs & the ‘N Word’ on Campus

Facilitators:  Tyson Amir, Kira Johnson, & Jason Seals FSMEI

Participant Level: For all levels, but primarily Developing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Deepen understanding of the history and contemporary reality of the N-Word, and its use by white and other non-Black communities.

  • Learn skills and strategies to engage your school community in assessing beliefs and socialization of anti-Blackness that are rooted in the N-Word and other derogatory racial slurs used to describe Black people, to lift up the OUSD best practices from CCPA & Bret Harte.   

  • Understand and apply tools and strategies to cultivate supportive and inclusive learning spaces for Black students, and begin developing strategies for preliminary implementation of ideas and concepts covered in this training to protect Black students from racial slurs on campus. 

  • Learn about school-wide examples of how to engage students, teachers, and administrators in cross-cultural dialogue to build a learning community centered on care, cultural pride, and justice.

Humanizing Black History - A Virtual Offering of the Experience Sankofa Project

Facilitators:  Mizan Alkebulan-Abakah, MH and Sizwe Andrews-Abakah, CoCreators of Spearitwurx

Participant Level:  Emerging, Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explore the  Virtual offering of the Experience Sankofa Project - an innovative art exhibit that combines history, live performance art, and sacred altars into an interactive timeline of African and American history.

  • Build our capacity for empathy and understanding of the contributions that African/Black peoples have made to human civilization to ignite our collective capacity for more solidarity and equity.

  • Inspire transformation in the way we engage with Black youth and families in order to create more positive and sustainable relationships.

  • Create courageous space for participants to reflect on their own history as a foundation for creating aspirations for a Thriving Black Future. Sankofa means "look back to move forward" - Forward to joy, success, equity and peace in Oakland Schools!

Sustaining Black Adults in OUSD 

Cultivating a Culture of Black Excellence: Staff Recruitment & Retention

Facilitators:  Jarrett Austin-Thomas, Recruitment & Retention Coordinator of Diversity and Inclusion; Cecilia Terrazas, Recruitment & Retention Coordinator of Diversity and Inclusion

Participant Level: Emerging, Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the history and context of Black educators. How did we end up in the situation we are in with Black educators underrepresented compared to students being served?

  • Understand some of the goals for the district regarding hiring, retaining and sustaining Black staff.

  • Understand the benefits of Black educators to students.

Thriving Black Student & Family Engagement in OUSD

Facilitators:  Adrian Grays, PLAN Black Parent Organizer; Alexia Maciel, PLAN Latinx Parent Organizer; Belinda Bellinger, PLAN Co-Executive Director; Che Phinessee, PLAN Black Family Liaison; Eleazar Cuenca, PLAN Latinx Family Liaison; OUSD Family Engagement Team

Participant Level: Emerging, Developing & Practicing

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand your role in transforming your school site as a space where Black students and families thrive. 

  •  Identify Transformative Family Engagement best practices that support thriving Black students and families.

  • Identify 2-5 TFE best practices to implement and execute in your own practice to demonstrate your own commitment to thriving Black students and families.

Joy Event
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For 10-month staff who are not within paid working hours on this day:

SEIU & AFSCME Members who are 10-month staff can check in with their Supervisor to see if they are eligible to submit an overtime form online if these times fall beyond contract hours:

  • Please list Raquel Jimenez - Office of Equity Executive Director as the approver.
  • You will be compensated at your Extra Time rate.
Thriving Summit FLYER Cover