Black Organizing Project (BOP) in Oakland, CA

On June 24th, 2020, the Black Organizing Project pushed the Oakland Unified School Board to pass the George Floyd Resolution to Eliminate the Oakland Schools Police Department and reinvest its $6 million budget into a non-carceral safety plan. This historic victory comes after nearly a decade of organizing led by Black students, families and community members after the murder of a young Black person at the hands of school police after a school dance.

In 2011, after the murder of 20-year-old Raheim Brown by two Oakland Unified School Police sergeants, BOP launched their Bettering Our School System (BOSS) Campaign, committing to fight to remove police from Oakland schools. BOP’s decade long fight pushed the school district to advance several reforms, including a first of its kind Complaint Policy which allowed parents and students to hold school police officers and school security accountable by instituting a formal, accessible, and more transparent complaint process, winning an MOU that limited the roles of police, eliminating “willful defiance” suspensions for 4th through 12th grade students, ending involuntary transfers to different schools – used as a discipline tactic – and shifting $2.3 million into restorative justice and other preventive programs.

In 2019, after collecting data that showed that since the 2015-16 school year, school staff made over 6,000 calls to police on students, BOP launched their Black Sanctuary Pledge, urging educators to sign on to not call the police on Black students. BOP continues to organize for the transformation of Oakland schools, ensuring that students and families are able to define and implement police free schools in Oakland through their People’s Plan for Police Free Schools.