Oakland Charter Academy Featured in “What is the Achievement Gap?” a short film produced by the Walton Family Foundation
OAKLAND, CA — Oakland Charter Academy is featured in “What is the Achievement Gap,” a short film produced by the Walton Family Foundation. This is the first of six videos in a series called “Innovations in Education,” that explores fresh ideas to improve education in the U.S for kids.
“I am proud to be a part of Oakland Charter Academy and it’s an honor to be recognized by the Walton Family Foundation,” says David Camarena, site director of Oakland Charter Academy. “Being involved in this video series reinforces my beliefs in educating urban youth. Others now know of the work we do at Oakland Charter Academy.”
Located in the Fruitvale District, Oakland Charter Academy is the flagship of the Amethod Public Schools organization and is one of six public charter schools in the East Bay. They opened in the fall of 1994 as Oakland’s first charter school, and at the time, were only the fourteenth charter school authorized in the State of California. They are currently the only National Blue Ribbon School in East Oakland.
“As a little girl, growing up in a poor immigrant family, I was hungry to achieve, and I became a firm believer in the idea that a person’s ZIP code and history need not determine her future,” says Evelia Villa, Chief Academic Officer at Amethod Public Schools. “We believe in opportunity for all, no matter their situation. We believe that each of our students can achieve anything. We eliminate the excuses and hit the ground running.”
Read the blog titled, “Set High Expectations to Close the Achievement Gap” and watch the “What is the Achievement Gap” video on the Walton Family Foundation blog.
West Contra Costa Unified School District School Board of Education Approves Five-Year Renewal for AMPS Richmond Charter Academy
RICHMOND, CA — On February 15, 2017, the West Contra Costa Unified School District Board of Education unanimously approved a five-year renewal for AMPS Richmond Charter Academy.
“The renewal of Richmond Charter Academy is more than a victory for Amethod Public Schools, but a victory for the students and families of Richmond that want quality educational institutions,” says Michael Bradley, after school education and safety coordinator at Richmond Charter Academy.
The bi-monthly school board meeting took place at Lovonya DeJean Middle School in Richmond. Hundreds of families filled the auditorium and gym wearing yellow and black Richmond Charter Academy shirts to express their support of their charter renewal.
"Last night made a deep impression on me. The parents, students, and staff that came out in support of our school was an emotionally moving event,” says Jeff Clinton, site director of Richmond Charter Academy and John Henry High School. “As a community, we are all dedicated to a rigorous learning environment and college readiness program for our students."
Richmond Charter Academy opened its doors in 2012 and serves approximately 230 students from grades 6-8. It is a part of Amethod Public Schools, a Bay Area network of charter schools in Oakland and Richmond.
"We are overjoyed with the West Contra Costa County Unified School District’s decision to renew Richmond Charter Academy,” says Yesenia Sanchez, dean of instruction at Richmond Charter Academy. “Having a high-performing middle school like ours in Richmond will make a positive impact in students lives for years to come. We will continue to work hard and serve our community."
To learn more about Richmond Charter Academy, visit www.amethodschools.org/RCA.
Over the past few weeks, we have seen decisions coming out of the new federal administration that run counter to the values of the AMPS organization. The recent Executive Order targeting individuals from seven nations with a majority Muslim population attacks the foundation of principles and values supporting the value of our immigrant populations. The history of the United States would be none were it not for the blood, sweat, tears, and efforts of immigrants that strived to make a better world for their future generations. As a child of Mexican immigrants, I unwaveringly stand against such decisions that lack contemplation and compassion and am committed to helping support students and their families who may be threatened or affected by such misguided actions.
In moments of unsettling change, we know from past experiences that families and students will look to their schools in search of support. To make it clear, AMPS is a welcoming and inclusive community that is steadfast in our commitment to provide a safe learning environment and support every student in every one of our campus communities — regardless of background, religion, income level, beliefs, identity, country of origin, or immigration status. We find enrichment and strength in our diversity. Our actions have included reaching out proactively to immigrant and civil rights organizations providing legal and other assistance to immigrant students and families and sponsoring forums to offer information to our community. We also have studied and will finalize the adoption of our organization’s stance to protect our students and families information, and ability to attend our schools without fear.
I also want to stress that this executive order does not impact Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) students. While it is still unclear how the DACA program will be impacted by the new administration, rest assured we will remain vigilant in tracking this issue and advocating on behalf of the students impacted. In our community, you are not alone and as always, we will be here to assist in any way possible.
With the belief in strength in numbers — we stand together.
Chief Executive Officer
Amethod Public Schools