Incumbent President of the Berkeley Unified School District Board of Education Ka’Dijah Brown is running for reelection in the 2022 term.
As a BUSD graduate and the youngest member and first teacher elected to the Board, Brown is running for reelection on the platform of equitably supporting underserved students, providing socio-emotional support for students and creating a safe, welcoming environment within BUSD.
“Not only am I the president of the school board, but I’m also a teacher, so I know firsthand what our students need,” Brown said. “We cannot afford to lose that unique and effective perspective on the board.”
Despite not planning to run for reelection initially, Brown said students, teachers and families urged her to run.
Since being elected in 2018, Brown has overseen the passage of three tax measures, including an increase in teacher salaries, the construction of new schools and maintenance within the districts. Brown also said she is particularly proud of the Black Lives Matter Resolution the Board passed in 2020.
“(This resolution) allocates a lot of resources to our Black and African American students, faculty, staff and families,” Brown said. “It paved the way for our African American success framework.”
Brown said BUSD is the first district to create an entire framework to support Black and African American students, rather than just one program.
According to Brown, education is often approached as “one-size fits all” and historically underserved students get the “short end of the education stick.”
Brown says that while Black and Brown students make up the smallest percentage of the student demographic, they are suspended at the highest rates and are underperforming in math, science and college and career readiness.
That is why she wants to improve instruction and intervention strategies to better serve underserved students.
In addition to the Black Lives Matter resolution, she has also passed a Latinx resolution and an Asian American Pacific Islander resolution to help “uplift and affirm” students of color in BUSD.
Brown’s endorsements include the Berkeley Federation of Teachers, Berkeley Parent’s Union, State Sen. Nancy Skinner, Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín, the entirety of the current Berkeley City Council, the entirety of the current BUSD Board and all BUSD Board presidents over the last 10 years, among others.
Brown said her continued dedication to students is shown in her history of service to the district.
“This is my labor of love … my heart’s work,” Brown said. “All of the things I want to accomplish and continue to see through are going to take more than one term. What BUSD needs is for voters to support my reelection to this campaign so that we can make the difference for our young people.”