Oakland technical high school

Small Learning Communities

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Academic Support

Small Learning Communities

To support Tech’s academic goals, Tech offers small learning communities at the 9th and 10th grade level, Academies (grades 10–12), BUILD and the Paideia Advanced Placement (AP)/Honors program (grades 10–12). The school also offers a number of other AP and Honors courses.

9th Grade Small Learning Communities

All 9th grade students belong to a “house” with common classes in English, California Studies, and Science. The three houses are Sol, Neptune, and Janus. Other 9th grade learning communities include:

  • English Language Learners (ELL) will be enrolled in an ELD English class.

  • BUILD: A program that provides students with real world entrepreneurial experiences that empower youth to excel in academics, become leaders in their communities, and succeed professionally. The program focuses on promoting teen businesses as well as preparing students to enter four-year colleges.

10th Grade Small Learning Communities (SLC)

  • Paideia: An integrated yearlong advanced college preparatory course that emphasizes the humanities. Students will fulfill both World Cultures and English 2 requirements by taking this two-period course.

  • Interlinks for All: An integrated yearlong college preparatory course that emphasizes the humanities. Students take common World History and English classes with the same teachers and core group of students.

  • English Language Learners (ELL) will be enrolled in an ELL English

  • Students enrolled in one of Tech’s academies (except Engineering) will take an English/Social Studies Core within their Academy and Bio Tech.

Field Trips

Field trips are taken to enhance or extend the classroom learning experience. Field trip forms are sent home with your student prior to the field trip. Parents or Guardians must sign the form and return it to their teacher in order for the student to participate on the trip. Adult chaperones are frequently needed for field trips. Chaperones must be cleared in advance by the school district. Parents and guardians should check with the teacher to see when chaperones are needed.

Back-to-School Night

Back-to-School Night typically is held on the last Thursday of September (check Calendar). Parents and guardians spend the evening at Oakland Tech, following their student’s schedule. This is an excellent opportunity to meet the student’s teachers, become familiar with the curriculum, and learn about the expectations for the year.


In 2014, the school began a pilot program using TurnItIn.com, a web-based service that allows students to turn in and track academic work online. Turnitin time stamps, archives, and checks for plagarism. Teachers leave feedback online. Ask teachers at Back to School Night if they use Turnitin for classwork and homework.


ther Academic Support Services

The following are additional academic services:

  • After-school and lunch tutoring in all subjects. Many teachers provide tutoring support for their students. Students should speak to their teachers immediately if they begin having difficulty.

  • Math Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) is an after-school program that promotes math and science education, exploration, and careers.

  • Tech Senior Mentors. Seniors are paired with freshmen to help them navigate the educational process.

  • P

    eers Assisting Students to Succeed (PASS)
    is a group of upper-grade Leadership students who provide educational guidance to 9th grade students by making class presentations and providing workshops during class time.

  • Culture Keepers are upper-grade Leadership students who offer classroom support to teachers and students inside of the classroom.

  • Computers and printers are available for student use free of charge in the library during school hours.

  • The Oakland Tech Website contains up-to-date information: www.oaklandtech.com

  • APEX is an online credit recovery classes. Students must see their counselor to sign up. (Cyber High is no longer offered.)

  • ApplyMap is a new data-driven college search program that helps families find the best college for their student.

  • T

    are available by placing an order with the school recorder, Ms. Conocono, in room 120 a minimum of five days in advance of the time they will be needed.

  • See College & Career Center in next section for more information on pre-college support such as EAOP, UC Berkeley Advising Corps, EBCF, TRIO, Upward Bound, and METS

College Planning Support

Planning for college or career begins the day your student arrives at Tech! Our counselors and PASS students (peer counselors) work to make sure everyone is taking the classes they need. Check in with your student regularly about their student’s post-high school goals—whether they are headed for college, vocational training, or work. Suggest that your student speak with people who are working in fields that your student might be interested in, and find out what training is required. Take advantage of all of our resources to make sure that you and your student fully understand what courses your student will need to pass—not only for high school graduation, but also for college admission or work opportunities.

College Events at Oakland Tech

Dates for the events below will be posted on the website and shared via school announcements.

  • Each fall, admissions representatives from approximately 45 colleges visit Tech during the school day. Check the Tech website or the counseling office for a calendar of the visits, or keep your eyes on the marquee and the “College” section of the weekly Bullhorn.

  • September (typically) – “Road To College I” - An evening event with information on applying to college

  • October (typically) – “Road To College II” – An evening event covering funding a college education

  • October – OUSD College Fair at Oakland Tech

  • October and November - “College Crunch Days” – Seniors get help with college applications (including writing personal statements). Every year Tech offers Seniors several days to work on their college applications at school during one of their classes (usually English). College Crunch volunteers are available for assistance.

  • January – Class of 2015 Alumni Panel – a lunch time event where graduates of the class of 2015 return to talk with current students about their first semester in college.

  • January – “Cash for College” – An evening event where financial aid experts walk you through completing the FAFSA/Dream Act

  • February – “FAFSA/Dream Act Crunch Days” – Students get help during the day with getting the FAFSA/Dream Act completed before the March 2 deadline

College Resources at Oakland Tech

Tech offers a host of resources for college-bound students.

  • College Planning Handbook – At the beginning of their senior year, each senior will receive a copy of Oakland Technical High School’s College Planning Handbook. The handbook is also available online now at www.oaklandtech.com.

  • Personal Statement Help – All senior English teachers require that students write a personal statement as an assignment. Additionally, help is available on “College Crunch” days and on a drop-in basis at the College & Career Center.

  • SAT/ACT Test Prep – Each year, in the fall & spring, People’s Test Preparation Services http://www.ocf.berkeley.edu/~ptps/ provides free SAT (and sometimes ACT) prep classes after school at Tech. The classes typically start in September and February, and last 6–8 weeks.

  • The Bullhorn – Weekly email with lots of information about activities and opportunities at Oakland Tech and in the community. There is always a college and scholarship section with deadlines and events listed. Sign up for the Bullhorn by emailing bullhorn@oaklandtech.com.

  • Scholarship Bulletin – The scholarship coordinator creates a monthly scholarship bulletin with details and deadlines on scholarships. Students can receive this via email, access it at www.oaklandtech.com, or pick up a paper copy in the counseling office.


10th – 12th Grade School Counselors - Based on his or her last name, each student in grade 10–12 is assigned a counselor (see below). Counselors work with their assigned students throughout their time at Tech. The 9th graders work with Theresa Delgado, x116, Theresa.Delgado@ousd.org.


Susheela Moonsamy, susheela.moonsamy@ousd.org, (510) 450-5400 x110, room 110


Amy Martinez, amy.martinez@ousd.org (510) 450-5400

x111, room 111


Jacqueline Johnson, jacqueline.johnson@ousd.org, (510) 450-5400 x114, room 114

The Recorder - The recorder is responsible for students’ records, including entering courses taken outside of Tech onto a student’s transcript. Anytime a student needs an OFFICIAL copy of his or her transcript, he or she must request the transcript directly from the recorder: Nona Conocono: nona.conocono@ousd.org x120, room 120

College & Career Center (C&CC)

College and career services are located in the back of the Oakland Tech Library; (510) 450-5400 x109. The C&CC is open five days a week to provide college and career exploration assistance to students on a drop-in basis or by appointment. It is a great resource for anything related to college and houses a number of programs available to Tech students. Some programs require applications.

UC Berkeley Early Academic Outreach Program (EAOP)

College Adviser: Nikko Cyl Roxas

Email: nikko_roxas@berkeley.edu

Hours: Mon & Wed 9am–3:30pm

UC Berkeley Destination College Advising Corps

College Adviser: Andrew Wilson

Email: andrew.wilson@berkeley.edu

Hours: Mon 11am–4PM, Tues–Fri 8:30am–4pm

Pre-College TRIO Talent Search Program

College Adviser: Karen Baccaro

Email: karen.baccaro@berkeley.edu

Hours: Tues–Thurs 9:30am–3:30pm

UC Berkeley Upward Bound Program

College Adviser: Hazel Amina

Email: puanani@berkeley.edu

Hours: Mon 10am–2 pm

Mills College Educational Talent Search (METS)

College Adviser: Paula Fonacie

Email: pfonacier@mills.edu

Hours: Main Campus Thurs 10am–4pm/FADA Fri 10am–2pm

Mills College Upward Bound Program

College Adviser: Tom Nishi

Email: tnishi@mills.edu

Hours: Tues 10 am–1:30 pm

College Entrance Testing

Many colleges require that students take college admission exams. There are three types of college admission exams:

  • SAT, a three-hour test that has Math assessment, Verbal assessment, and Writing assessment sections.

  • SAT Subject Test, a one-hour test of specific subject matter (e.g. Spanish).

  • ACT, a three-hour test similar to the SAT. It includes a Science section.

Students should check the entrance requirements of the colleges they are considering. Many colleges require students to take specific subject tests, sometimes depending on their potential major. Students entering engineering and the hard sciences, in particular, often have to take the Math 2 and Science subject tests. Students should check with their teachers to see if a class will cover the material tested in a particular subject test. The SAT, SAT Subject test, and ACT are given several times a year. (See schedule on page 39). A fee is charged to take these exams, but fee waivers are available to eligible students. Students should check with their counselor for details. For a list of colleges/universities that do not require the SAT or ACT, visit www.fairtest.org. Tech offers free test prep classes each fall and winter.


The PSAT is a pre-SAT exam and gives students an idea of what it is like to take the SAT and how they might do. OUSD pays for all 10th graders to take the PSAT. Other students who wish to take the PSAT may do so by paying the fee in advance at the Treasurer’s office. 11th graders considering applying to four-year colleges/universities are strongly encouraged to take the PSAT again. Students tend to do better on the SAT after the experience of taking the PSAT. Eleventh graders who are the top performers on the PSAT in the country are eligible for the National Merit Scholarship and other recognition programs. Fee waivers are available for students who qualify.

Get more information on college tests at www.collegeboard.com (PSAT, SAT & Subject Tests) and www.actstudent.org (ACT).

2015-16 TEST DATES

The testing dates for the SAT, ACT, PSAT/NMSQT, and AP are available from the counseling office or online at:


College Admission Checklists3




  • Sign up for the PSAT.


  • Take the PSAT.

  • Meet with Counselor to evaluate your transcript for college preparation.

  • Make sure you are taking the courses you need for college admission.

  • Attend college events at Tech, such as Road to College and the College Fair.

  • Attend College Information Day at UC Berkeley.


  • Talk with friends, family, and counselors about your college plans and how they might help.

  • Keep a list of colleges and classes that you are interested in. You can find information in the Counseling Office, in the library, or on the Internet.


  • Write to college admission offices for information, catalogs and campus visit dates.

  • Plan college campus visits with your family or check with your Counselor for special trips organized for Oakland Tech/Oakland high school students.


  • Visit college campuses during the semester break.

  • R

    eview your PSAT scores with your Math and English teachers.

  • Plan a strategy for getting the SAT scores you want. Check with your Counselor for SAT review programs.


  • Register for the SAT and SAT Subject/ACT tests.

  • Choose your top five colleges.

  • Plan visits during the spring break, and collect information on each college.

  • Explore careers in more depth by talking to people using the skills you would like to develop, or by reading.


  • Visit distant colleges during the spring break (some colleges can arrange for you to stay overnight in the dorms for your visit).

  • Review your SAT scores and GPA with your Counselor to determine your eligibility. Also review your transcripts.

  • Attend the 510 College Connection Fair at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga.


  • Continue to collect information on your top college and career choices.

  • Contact graduating seniors who are going to college; they are a great source of information and may be open to assisting you in a campus visit in the fall.

  • Begin to think about your Senior Project.

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