Office of Black Student Achievement
Why Black Students?
The Office of Black Male Student Achievement (OBMSA) was created in 2014 to specifically to address the needs of the largest demographic group within MPS. It represents an equitable approach to tackling the challenges that exist for the school district’s Black male students.
The degree to which racial disparities continue to persist in MPS is unacceptable. Native-born, Black males consistently perform at or near the bottom on nearly all performance indicators in MPS. We must focus on supporting Black male students in more aggressive and effective ways.
We must commit to having equity in this district and lead more intentionally around getting results for these specific groups. Accelerating the growth of students who are two and three years behind will require more targeted resources and support.
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 experience 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