Public School On Oakland/Emeryville Border To Close, Repercussions For Emeryville

Public School On Oakland/Emeryville Border To Close,
Repercussions For Emeryville

(originally published by the Emeryville Tattler)

News Analysis
The Oakland School District’s dire and unraveling travails threaten to spill over into Emeryville with the recent announcement of the probable closure of its Santa Fe Elementary School. Oakland’s Superintendent of the Schools, former Emeryville Superintendent Tony Smith, is gunning for Santa Fe school, a public elementary school right on Emeryville’s border with Oakland. Such a closure would likely bring more Oakland inter-district transfers to Emeryville’s Anna Yates Elementary School, threatening to erode student/teacher ratios here.

Further, a large Oakland exodus to Anna Yates would take pressure off Emeryville leaders to provide more family friendly housing.

The city council and the school board in Emeryville has experienced growing resident pressure to produce more suitable homes for families to support last year’s $400 million school bond funded Center of Community Life; a new school and community center slated for San Pablo Avenue. The proposed new school has been facing a shortage of students owing to our peculiar demographics, brought on by 20 years of primarily building loft-type condominiums. The housing Emeryville leaders have been delivering has netted an extremely low number of Emeryville children, a problem vexing civic leaders as they now scramble to attract families.

A large influx of new Oakland students from a Santa Fe Elementary School closure would help fill the new school, easing Emeryville’s need to supply family housing to support the school regardless of continuing promises made by the decision makers to build more family housing in Emeryville.