Topic

black and african american rights

38 petitions

Started 2 months ago

Petition to Tara Gard

Increase the minority teacher poulation in Ousd

Dear Ms.Gard, Mass incarceration is a big problem in the United States today, more specifically for African Americans. This issue dates back until the dismantlement of slavery, but the new wave of incarceration is a form of modern slavery. The first step to getting African American out of prisons is to get them off the street, before that we need to get them good jobs, and for any of that to work we need them to thrive in the classroom. It can be difficult for African Americans youth to stay the course and get a degree when their teachers do not support them, have strong biases, and do not understand them. Those things can be differed by African American teachers and mentors in schools. The problem that we are addressing is the fact that the students are predominantly black and brown, and almost all of their teachers are white.  For the past couple years OUSD has posted the racial breakdown of the district. On the 2017-2018 edition, it said that the student body is only 11.4 percent white while the teacher body was ~50 percent. The fact that there is such a large gap between the demographics of our student and teacher bodies in our school district demonstrates how this issue of diversity in the classroom is real for us and those in the surrounding communities. Consequently, this gap causes decreased graduation levels, implicit and explicit bias, and the lack of teacher mentorship and support. In an article by Bill de Blasio, It said that diverse classrooms can play a key role in dispelling damaging stereotypes and teach the students to appreciate their differences. By associating a diverse teacher workforce and the dispelling of damaging stereotypes, Bill de Blasio argues that the addition of teachers of color will bring students closer together and bond together a stronger community. Since the community will be stronger within the new generation of students, the school system will export more understanding people who learn to accept differences and make equity a reality in the United States. The problem of teacher diversity is something that most turn a blind eye to, but in reality it is something that can bring african Americans out of this dark, violent, and subordinate view to unify our country and create equity for all. We demand for an increase in the black teacher population. We are specifically calling out for Black teachers(not only for the black community but in all oakland schools). Our ask is that We want Tara Gard(deputy chief of talent division in the ousd schools) to take out 1 day out of each year to attend a Bay Area black expo and demand for them to apply at Oakland tech and to recruit more black teachers. We feel that her viewing this will change her views on the issues in our schools. We went to a dinner produced by The Black Teacher Project, celebrating black teachers. We interviewed them and they think Tara should do this. Our action plan is to try to increase the minority teachers population by implementing and developing a new recruitment plan. We are trying to petition for teachers to come from HBCU job fairs and apply for our Oakland schools. In a recent article by “the black teacher effect”, there was a study showing that a black student who had at least one black teacher in elementary school were 29% less likely to dropout of high school (which since then, is now much more). In a recent survey we made, the mass majority of the 9th grade students at Oakland Tech came to a correspondence that they have all non-minority teachers. This lead us to follow up questions such as if they can relate or feel comfortable talking to their teachers. Almost 90% of the students inputted that they can agree with their teachers only 30% of the time. However, an increasing amount of minority students felt there was almost an ethnic gap for discipline due to the fact that they felt that they would get in more trouble than the white students. Like in the “Black panther Party Ten point plan”, we “We want decent Education for our people that exposes the truth nature of this decadent American society. We want education that teaches us our true history and our role in the present-day society”. To begin with, we will give our petition signatures to Ms.Morrison(co-principal), Mr.Diaz(co-principals), and Tara Gard We are trying to bring awareness towards not only our signatories/petition signers, but also to our school leaders to prioritize diversity so they are intentional about recruiting minority teachers (not just choosing 1 token minority teacher). As a 9th grader, from my own personal experiences and cultural backgrounds, I believe that I can understand and more trust educators that are perceived with cultural and experiential similarities.  

Julia Allen
121 supporters
Update posted 2 months ago

Petition to Todd Spitzer (Orange County Supervisor 3rd District), California Governor, Tony Rackauckas, Loretta Sanchez, Loretta Lynch, Kamala Harris, Barack Obama, DIane Feinstein, Alex Padilla

Exonerate Kenneth Clair: DNA Evidence Points to Someone Else.

On November 15, 1984, 5-year-old Jerrod Hessling witnessed the beating, rape, and stabbing death of his babysitter. When asked to describe the killer, he said, without hesitation, that it was a white male. Another child present during the murder saw a white man’s tattooed arm reach inside the house to open a sliding glass door. Yet somehow, the lawyers in the case determined that Kenneth Clair, a dark-skinned African-American homeless man who had been squatting next door, was the killer. When Jerrod saw him on the witness stand and insisted they had the wrong man, the prosecution chalked it up to youth and trauma and pursued the death penalty for Kenneth Clair. To this day, 31 years later, Mr. Clair sits on San Quentin’s death row, awaiting his execution date. [UPDATE: I was recently made aware that the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals secretly overturned Mr. Clair’s death sentence and changed it to life in prison without parole. This is mixed news -- his life is spared, but he no longer has the right to an attorney under habeas corpus laws, and he has not been granted a retrial. That means the exonerating DNA evidence will NOT be seen in court. We now have to focus our energy on asking Governor Jerry Brown and California State Attorney General Kamala Harris to investigate the case and exonerate Kenneth Clair for this crime he did not commit. It is Mr. Clair’s only remaining chance for justice. ] But that’s not the biggest bombshell in this case -- in 2008, forensic testing revealed that DNA found on the murder victim did not match Clair’s. DNA taken from a glove found at the scene also did not match. It matches another individual, but the Orange County District Attorney insists that “confidentiality is required” concerning this evidence, and for 7 years now, the identity of the person whose DNA does match the swab has remained a secret. In the interest of justice, we must call on the Orange County DA and California state lawmakers to demand that the DNA evidence be turned over to Kenneth Clair’s defense. Since his conviction, Clair has struggled with ineffective counsel. He wanted his lawyers to work at investigating the crime, rather than simply trying to free him from death row, but they never did. His plea for substitute counsel even made it to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2012, and he did eventually receive a switch of counsel. Finally, he is being represented by people who are dedicated to his exoneration. But their hands are tied without this crucial DNA evidence, and more of Clair’s precious life is wasting away in prison as they fight to obtain it. Please sign my petition: Obviously the Orange County District Attorneys office, with their current district attorney Tony Rackauckas will continue withholding exculpatory evidence from the defense. The only alternative is to both Mr. Rackauckas out of office. So our goal now is to fight this battle both by rallies and at the voting box. If you cannot vote, we still need your donations and also your time if you can volunteer. OUR MAIN MESSAGE IS THAT THE DNA IS NOT KENNETH CLAIR'S. WE DO NOT CARE IF THE DA'S OFFICE CONTINUES TO WITHHOLD THE RESULTS ANY MORE........  NOW OUR MISSION IS TO EXONERATE KENNETH CLAIR. "IF THE DNA SAYS NO .........YOU HAVE TO EXONERATE AND LET KENNETH CLAIR GO......."  

C. J. Ford
161,630 supporters