Five Oakland schools win Title I achievement awards

Some good news for your spring break (or when you return to reality):

The California Department of Education has announced the winners of the Title I Academic Achievement Award, a distinction for schools with rising test scores that receive funding for low-income children.

All five Alameda County winners were public schools in Oakland: American Indian Public Charter School II (which will remain open, after all), Burckhalter Elementary, Cleveland Elementary, Lighthouse Community Charter High and Lincoln Elementary. Two Contra Costa County schools also won — Highland Elementary in West Contra Costa Unified and Los Medanos Elementary in Pittsburg Unified.

Tom Torlakson, the state superintendent of public instruction, had this to say about the 117 winners: “The progress being made at these schools, which serve our neediest students, should serve as a beacon of hope for California. At a time of fiscal crisis and economic uncertainty, they continue to improve, building a brighter future for their students.”

Eligibility criteria (from CDE): The school must demonstrate that all students are making significant progress toward proficiency on California’s academic content standards. Additionally, the school’s socioeconomically disadvantaged students must have doubled the achievement targets set for them for two consecutive years.

You can find more information about the award here.


Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Debora

    Congratulations to all of the schools.

    I personally know that Cleveland, American Indian Charter and Lighthouse Community Charter have been incorporating art, music and science into their curriculum in innovative ways. Each of these schools also pay very close attention to students achievement at all levels and move up ALL students, whether the students have already mastered grade level material prior to moving into the grade or whether the students are working at below grade level.

    Every day at each of these schools all teachers, school workers and the students themselves are aware of the work that needs to be done. And, each of these schools has the equivalent of an Individualized Education Plan for each and every student at the school that is signed by parent/guardian, student, and teacher(s) and is updated at least annually.

    All of these schools (three mentioned) have a “no excuses” policy for the learning plans for each student.

    Congratulations to all and keep up the excellent work with these future leaders of our city, state and country.

  • Lisa Capuano Oler

    Do you know what the student:teacher ratios are at these schools? I know Burckhalter is about 30:1. When I looked it up online I was getting about 20:1 for Lighthouse, AIC, and Cleveland. Is this old data? It was on findthebest.com.

  • Debora

    Cleveland is about 22:1 in K, 1, 2 and then closer to 30:1 in 3, 4, and 5. They also have a large percentage of English language learners.

    American Indian Charter is about 30:1.

    Lighthouse Charter is closer to 25:1

    Lisa, the vast majority of Title 1 schools in the district are closer to 20-25 to 1 than these high performing schools. I think the biggest difference is the looping of teachers for two consecutive years and the Individualized Education Plans that help everyone keep their focus.

  • Lisa Capuano Oler

    I think the IEP is a great idea. It means you have to know your kids. Looping definitely increases accountability.
    Actually ,I am at Burckhalter. We are about 30:1 at every grade level this year. I wish the vast majority of Title I schools were 20-25:1. That is not true, sadly enough.