Friday, January 8, 2010

Oakland and Richmond Parents May Get More School Choices

By Robert Gammon
Fri, Jan 8, 2010 at 11:21 AM

Thousands of Oakland and Richmond parents whose children attend failing schools may be able to transfer their children to successful schools outside their cities under sweeping new legislation signed by the governor yesterday. The legislation, which was aimed at complying with President Obama’s Race to the Top education plan, will allow parents of children who attend any of the state’s 1,000 lowest performing schools to transfer to better schools in other communities.

It’s unclear how many of Oakland and Richmond schoolchildren will be allowed to transfer under the program, but if large numbers of them take advantage of it, then it could lead to a significant exodus from the cities’ worst performing schools. Before the legislation was passed, kids attending failing schools in Oakland were allowed to transfer to better schools within the city, but that was limited, because of lack of space in the small number of high-performing Oakland public schools.

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