Tony Smith’s Holistic Approach to Oakland Schools
by Behnosh Najafi | | Posted under
Enjoy a sneak peak of what’s to come at the Bridge Conference on October 8 and 9 with this interview of keynote speaker, Dr. Anthony “Tony” Smith, Superintendent of Oakland Unified School District (OUSD).
Dr. Smith will share his perspectives on structural racism, youth leadership and school-community partnerships at the Bridge. OUSD has been recognized as California’s most improved urban school district and has made a commitment to building a full-service, community-school district which provides a broad set of supports needed to ensure student success, both in school and in life.
Here are some key concepts from the interview:
- We need to prepare kids for work and make sure job opportunities exist. “Kids need to have a real connection to work… through project based and integrated curriculum in high school.”
- The high drop-out rate “is a city wide issue…Everyone of the kids in Oakland should graduate. How are you regardless if you’re in business, philanthropy, you’re a citizen, how are you contributing to helping every kid graduate?” And are you providing jobs that match the students’ skills?
- OUSD now engages in data-sharing with the housing authority to gain a deeper understanding of community needs. “We need to take into account where families are coming from.”
- “How do you get kids interested in STEM?” asks the interviewer. Smith replies, “I’d argue that those kids are interested. It’s not about getting them, it’s about opportunities. They need places where they are connected with other kids doing the same work.”
- Techbridge is an afterschool program that “connects girls with each other and high quality projects that are STEM based. You get kids and structures in places where they can go deep in the content and they get passionate about it.”
Register for Bridge now and learn from Superintendent Smith in person this October! You’ll also have a chance to win a weekend getaway in idyllic Port Townsend!
Posted in:| Permalink | Share: Facebook Twitter
← Next Post Previous Post →