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FIA’s A-G Raise the Bar Campaign

My name is Javier Barraza and I’m the lead organizer for FIA’s A-G Raise the Bar campaign. I’d like to update you on my work this fall because we have some exciting workshops at schools across the city where students are actively taking control of their education to ensure they are A-G eligible.

We are building on our momentum from the spring when FIA held our third annual A-G Award Ceremony at BayTech High School. We celebrated Oakland High Schools that are committed to “Raising the Bar ” by graduating high school students with 80 percent or above A-G completion rates. During our award ceremony, ten Oakland High Schools committed to partnering with FIA to implement one of FIA’s proposed A-G Best Family Communication Practices, which included A-G student and family-led workshops focused on ensuring all Oakland high school students and families are aware of A-G requirements.

Nathan, Meklit, and Mahlet leading an A-G Workshop with their AIMS peers focused on making sure they’re aware of the importance of A-G.

This fall, FIA youth leaders began hosting their A-G workshops, focusing on 9th and 10th grade students, breaking down the requirements and letting students know about the current state of A-G in Oakland. This work is extremely important because currently, only 51 percent of African American students are graduating with their A-G requirements completed, and only 60 percent Latinx students are graduating with A-G completion across Oakland public schools. This year’s students also are focusing on transcript comprehension, making sure they have a clear understanding if they are currently A-G eligible.

Oakland Unity student leaders are leading the way, and have talked with over 100 students through their A-G workshops. In the months leading up to these workshops, we are working to set up workshops at schools including Alternatives in Action, American Indian, Latitude, Envision, ARISE, BayTech, Metwest, and Lighthouse.

Benjamin Ceja and Mariela Jimenez, seniors at Oakland Unity High School, leading an A-G Workshop at Alternatives in Action.

In the spring, FIA leaders will work on leading family-led workshops at partner high schools focused on sharing A-G information with parents. We believe strongly that parents need to be in the loop as much as students to make sure a student has a successful education experience.

Our goal is to talk to 1,000 students and 100 parents from 10 Oakland schools this year to make sure each and every Oakland student and parent are aware of the A-G requirements. This is how we will “Raise the Bar” for our Oakland families and make sure that our Black and Latinx Students are graduating with their A-G requirements completed. All of this work will lead us to our Fourth Annual A-G Award Ceremony in Spring 2024. Hope to see you all then!

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