Oakland Small Schools Foundation, dedicated to supporting small Oakland schools

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We support small Oakland schools
Oakland Small Schools Foundation, dedicated to supporting small Oakland schools
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OSSF-Funded School-Based Programs

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School leaders have identified numerous unfunded needs in their schools. OSSF staff works with each school to tailor fund development campaigns -- with donor drives, fundraising events, and grants development -- that fill the gaps in financing to meet the needs. Each school is different, but we have focused much of our efforts on the following common needs.

After-school comprehensive programs
OSSF supports schools’ efforts to develop comprehensive after-school programs that provide a safe place between the end of the regular school day and when guardians return home from work, and include recreation, arts, and academic interventions that are so critical to a full education. OSSF develops grants and these programs at 20 small schools.

Family Support Programs
Small schools need extra services for families to empower them to access the variety of supports available to them in the community, navigate the educational system, feel comfortable engaging with teachers and principal, and participate fully in their children’s learning. OSSF fundraises for family leadership, family literacy, and home visits programs for several of the network small schools.

After-School Program Collaborative
The Oakland Small Schools Foundation fosters the creation and sustainability of robust comprehensive after-school programs through collaborative fundraising, brokering of partnerships with community-based organizations, and data management and evaluation systems for the participating schools.

Family Resource Center Network
Partnering with schools to provide families with additional supports and access to services, OSSF assists with fundraising and partnership-development for school-based resource centers.

College Tours and Field trips
Visiting colleges, field trips, and hands-on fieldwork enhance all students’ educations. The majority of students of the small schools do not have access to these activities through their families’ resources. OSSF works with schools to develop campaigns that support these trips that are not funded through their regular school budgets. When students experience the world outside their neighborhoods and see colleges first hand, they are inspired to continue their educations and have hope for their futures.

Teacher Supports and Supplies
Classrooms in all public schools have fewer supplies than they need to provide a sufficient education for students. In the small schools, the deficiency is more pronounced. We also know that in new schools, teachers need more time in grade-level collaboration and other professional development to design the school-wide objectives and execute the strategies that make these innovative young schools effective for students. OSSF helps schools fund teacher supports and supplies which foster better teaching and improved conditions for learning.

Small Class Sizes
Government programs fund small classrooms of 20 students for kindergarten through 3rd grade. No one questions that smaller class sizes and personalization are vital to learning. From 4th grade on, the class sizes grow to as many as 32 students without additional funds. OSSF helps schools raise the funds that support additional staff so that schools can keep class sizes small.

Arts Integration, Bi-Lingual Immersion, Project-Based Learning, Internships
Most of the new small schools use innovative practices that favor critical thinking, problem-solving, and real-life experience over test preparation and memorization. Research supports the effectiveness of curricula that integrate arts with academics, multiple language development and home language preservation, and challenging projects that promote learning across subject matter and culminate in exhibitions and portfolios rather than tests to demonstrate understanding and excellence. OSSF supports schools in these efforts by identifying and securing funding for daytime arts programs, project supplies and texts, program management, and professional development for teachers.

Counseling
Inner-city students need more counseling in socio-emotional development and education and career development than their affluent counterparts. OSSF assists schools in funding counselors.


photo this page: Student at UPA