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Action Plan
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Action Plan

Action Plan

The Office of Black Student Achievement began in 2014 as the Office of Black Male Student Achievement, and was created to specifically address the needs of the largest demographic group within MPS, Black males. OBSA represents an equitable approach to tackling the challenges that exist for the school district's Black male and female students.  To this end, the development and creation of the course, B.L.A.C.K. (Building Lives Acquiring Cultural Knowledge), was created by the office's founding director and now Associate Superintendent,  Dr. Michael Walker. 

In 2019, OBMSA went through expansion to become the Office of Black Student Achievement, known to most as OBSA. With the expansion, OBSA created the Queens Program designed to bring attention and awareness to some of the inequities Black girls expereince within the public school system. In addition to the B.L.A.C.K. course, the program provides advocacy for Black girls in the classroom as well as the larger school district. 

The core focus of OBSA is to impact the broken beliefs that exists within the educational experience of Black students. The Office of Black Student Achievement doesn't aim to "fix" Black students. The purpose and goal of OBSA is to facilitate an environment that's responsive to Black students. OBSA seeks to engage students, families, teachers and community members in authentic and innovative ways through;

*Professional Development to MPS Educators

*Authentic engagement with MPS families and the Minneapolis community

*Direct Service with Kings and Queens

*Pipeline of recent graduates to interns

OBSA Belief Framework

At the start of the office, founding Director Michael Walker went on a listening tour where he made time to talk with and learn from various members of the MPS community, including teachers, administrators, educators, students, and families . He learned that many of the people who are in positions to support Black students had a deficit mindset about them. In a way, they blamed the students for the conditions that they were in. Historical context proves that the educational system was designed for the educational success of white students, which had and continues to have a direct and negative impact on the oppportunities and expereinces of Black students within this system. We are not here to "fix" Black students. In fact, we are here to change the beliefs and mindsets of educators as well as awaken the greatness within Black students.  

B.L.A.C.K Building Lives Acquiring Cultural Knowledge

OBSA offers a high school course titled B.L.A.C.K. Culture. This year-long course is offered during the regular school day and offers an elective credit towards high school graduation. The B.L.A.C.K. course gives students the opportunity to be in a class where Black joy, Black culture and Black history are centered and celebrated.