KOO continues to scale and meet divergent District’s needs
[Oakland, CA. May, 2022] Kingmakers of Oakland (KOO), the trailblazing organization focused on improving learning and life outcomes for Black boys, has just completed their comprehensive Annual Report for 2021. Guided by their philosophy to “Heal the fish by treating the toxic ecosystem,” KOO’s 42-page report underscores the organization’s values, vision, growing reach, and most importantly, provides the activities and strategies on how they have successfully effected change in school curriculum and culture.
Though never forgetting their Oakland origins, this report makes clear how efficiently KOO is growing nationally. In 2018 KOO started as a spin-off from African American Male Achievement, within the Oakland Unified School District, to share their theory of change framework with outside districts. By 2020 KOO garnered a fiscal sponsorship with the National Equity Project. Then in July 2021 KOO became an autonomous 501c3 organization leading the equity work to serve Black boys, their families and their educators. Philanthropic leaders like Raikes Foundation, Google, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Warriors Foundation and more provided KOO with the resources to scale and serve more districts nationally.
KOO continued to build-out their organizational infrastructure and onboard dedicated staff members who diligently served 8 school districts in 2021. Philanthropy has also accelerated investment in technology allowing KOO to build a virtual learning platform. This has increased their reach to serve under-resourced districts with leading technologies which interrupts the racial discrepancies across virtual learning in an increasingly tech-driven world.
KOO’s transformative initiatives are not confined to the classroom. The Annual Report also highlights KOO’s model of six Systems Change Drivers: Youth Voice & Leadership, Community & Family Engagement, Narrative Change, and Policy to go alongside Culturally Relevant Pedagogy and Curriculum. Through these pandemic years KOO’s commitment to include and value youth voice continues to lead them to be needs-responsive.
Through listening campaigns and the establishment of their Street Team they have facilitated youth and adult events that offer strategies and best practices to build the collective will and skills of all district stakeholders to improve the academic and life outcomes for Black boys.
The report also highlights the media, film and music projects that activate people in the movement, by connecting to their souls. Over the past 2 years they have completed 2 books, 2 films, and 3 studio albums (Kings in the Making, Revolution Remix, and Black Joy).
To read please click to download Kingmakers of Oakland 2021 Final Annual Report.
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