School district votes to close Roots International Academy in Oakland

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Amid angry teachers, parents and students, the Oakland Unified School District voted 6-1 to close Roots International Academy.

Per the vote, Roots will close next fall and students will be transferred to other nearby schools.

Demonstrators brought the Oakland School Board meeting to a halt. Board members forced to leave left the stage.

"We oppose any school closure we will not be divided and conquered!" said one woman.

Parents, students and teachers fought to save the East Oakland school from closure.

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"Y'all want to shut us down at the end of the day we're a family, still strong," said students.

The district says Roots Academy has poor test scores and less than 200 students.

"Roots is a quality school," said one teacher. "I'm telling you this despite what you say."

The group chanted, "When we strike, we win!"

In the meantime, union reps met Monday to begin the process of a strike vote for Oakland teachers. Teachers could be on the picket lines as early as next month. Their demands have not changed.

"That our students have smaller class sizes that there is an increase in student support such as counselors nurses librarians also a living wage to keep our best educators in Oakland," said Oakland Teachers Association President Keith Brown

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The union wants a 12 percent salary increase over three years, but the district says its growing deficit won't allow it.

"Given our limited resources were going to be able to give them what we can, given the state we're in," said OUSD spokesperson John Sasaki.

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