Blogging Bayport Alameda

August 28, 2015

Blast from the past: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Commerce

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

Really, nothing more than something fun for the weekend before school starts.  Found in 1977 Alameda City Council minutes:

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August 27, 2015

Blast from the past: fair housing rights

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

In 1988, the City attempted to, once again, address some form of renter protection in Alameda via a resolution that would encourage landlords to give tenants a justification as to why they were being evicted.  This resolution died from lack of a second, here’s the entire thing, it appears only one City Council member Joe Camicia was pushing for the adoption of this resolution but his conservative colleagues were having none of it.  Fun fact: Joe Camicia is the City Council member that had his file cabinet looted through by another City Councilmember at that time.

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August 26, 2015

Blast from the past: Measure I

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:06 am

I linked to the Measure I ballot measure last week, but wanted to excerpt for you from an article in the Alameda Times Star prior to the election.  As I mentioned, Measure I passed (shocker!) but was invalidated by the court.

From the article, apologies in advance for any misspellings, I’m typing this out from a print out from the microfiche:


August 25, 2015

Blast from the past: census error?

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:05 am

Alameda’s Reginald James is one person that can reliably be counted on to uncover and write about the uncomfortable parts of Alameda’s history particularly on race and housing issues.  On his tumblr page from two years ago there was an entry about Amos Mecartney one of the old families of Alameda.

I’m just going to excerpt the whole passage, but if you want to see the actual handwritten census document, click through:


August 24, 2015

Blast from the past: rent control

Filed under: Alameda — Lauren Do @ 6:04 am

Earlier this year I was able to convince my kids to hang out at the library with me so I could do some microfiching while they browsed the kid section.  Suffice it to say it was a one time deal and I haven’t been able to make it back into the microfiche archives for a while.  But during the power 30 minutes they gave me way back in February or something, I was able to find a few interesting things.  First on rent control.

I would scan these articles but my scanner is on the fritz and you don’t really want me to take photos and post those right?  Because that would be totally janky.

Anyway, in 1985 some Alamedans tried to get rent control passed in Alameda but fell short because of procedure issues.  According to an article in the Alameda Times-Star on March 26, 1985 a group by the name of Tenants and Landlords for Fair Rent managed to collect 6346 signatures to place a measure on the ballot.  However, the petition was invalidated, highlights:


August 21, 2015

Smarter Balanced beam

Filed under: Alameda, School — Lauren Do @ 6:01 am

In September families in AUSD will receive scores for the new California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress test, aka the Smart Balanced Test.  Apparently you can decide to opt your student out of this test, but how else will you know how to arbitrarily decide on how good a school is without test scores?

I think a good warning to most parents is, when they get the scores is: don’t panic.  I keep telling myself this because (1) I’m a worrier and (2) a bit of a tiger mom.  I’m not necessarily proud of the second thing, but at least I can recognize it in myself.

Here’s a short video that explains how to read the test:


August 20, 2015

Soft sell

Filed under: Alameda, Alameda Landing, Business — Lauren Do @ 6:00 am

Today there’s a soft opening for CREAM at Alameda Landing (ice cream sandwiches on cookies, like Cookiebar) from 3 – 5 p.m.   All proceeds go to benefit the Alameda Boys and Girls Club if you purchase on the soft opening day.   The Grand Opening is scheduled for Saturday and they’re giving out free ice cream sandwiches on the Saturday grand opening day.  Free!

Another Alameda Landing business is also opening on Saturday as well: Spin Pizza.  Spin Pizza will open across the street from Habit and — taking a cue from Habit’s successful openings — will donate 100% of the proceeds on this soft opening day to the Alameda Education Foundation if you come in between 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. for lunch and 5 – 7 p.m. for dinner.

It’s always a good thing when new businesses support local organizations.


August 19, 2015

Census track

Filed under: Alameda, School — Lauren Do @ 6:09 am

Mike McMahon’s comment yesterday regarding attendance zones got me thinking about creating some new graphs based on census tract specific data and how this compares to the attendance zones for the neighborhood schools. I wasn’t able to precisely map the census tracts to the attendance zones, and there is some overlap, but in general it gives you an idea of the neighborhood data as compares to what the school demographics end up being.  Here are the tracts that I associated to each school, I did not include Maya Lin as it is a magnet school and therefore open for all students regardless of attendance zone:

census tracts

I created two types of infographics: one which overlays a line graph over bar graphs and the other as side to side bar graphs. All of the East End and Bay Farm schools (Earhart, Bay Farm, Edison and Otis) tracked the school demographics closely to the census data.  Franklin also tracked pretty closely to the census data as well.

However all the other schools did not (Lum, Haight, Ruby Bridges and Paden) these school have disproportionate numbers when you compare the census numbers to the school demographics.  Haight is a bit tricky because it’s a large attendance zone after Washington’s rebirth as Maya Lin, so I won’t be going into detail about Haight.  First off Lum:


August 18, 2015

Uneven bars

Filed under: Alameda, School — Lauren Do @ 6:08 am

Updated to include Paden numbers.

KQED, piggybacking on the great This America Life show on schools and segregation, which uses the Normal Rockwell title and painting of Ruby Bridges to evoke the general feel of the piece, tackles the issue from a Bay Area perspective.   Listening to some of the comments of the parents who were upset with students from a failing school district being bused to their district was very difficult in the This American Life piece.

Yesterday someone asked if the trend in Alameda is similar to what is happening in San Francisco and the answer is, “not really.”  The only school that comes close to being “racially isolated” which is defined as 60% or more of one race is Edison at 59.5%.

I put all the elementary school data from the latest available on Ed-Data to show the difference between what the demographics are at the general AUSD level and then compared to the individual elementary schools.   I also compared each individual school against the district wide numbers to show how individual schools’ population differ from the district wide numbers.  Here’s an example of my kids’ school: Ruby Bridges.


August 17, 2015

We don’t need another hero

Filed under: Alameda, City Council, Development — Lauren Do @ 6:07 am

Last night for those of you that have HBO (or subscribe to HBO Now) might have caught the mini series premiere of “Show Me A Hero” by the creator of acclaimed shows “The Wire” and “Treme.”  It is on the topic of the very sexy and gripping affordable housing.  And not just any affordable housing, affordable housing forced on the city of Yonkers in the 80s to desegregate the city. I thought this synopsis on Slate did a good job of preparing the viewer for what to expect or allow people who don’t intend on watching the show some highlights to sort of understand what the mini series is about.

A long-gestating lawsuit has finally found Yonkers, a working-class city just north of the New York City border, guilty of intentionally segregating its housing. The judge presiding over the case has ruled that 200 units of low-income housing must be built on the east, and white, side of the city. That is, more precisely, 200 units of housing, to be spread out over eight different locations, in the white part of a city of a couple hundred thousand people that has spent 40 years practicing systematic housing discrimination and segregation. That is, also, 200 units of housing greeted by white homeowners as an existential threat to their property values and way of life, visited upon them by liberal outsiders, to be fought viciously and rancorously, lest any of the “public housing people” come to live next door.

Nick [Wasicsko] is happily swept into power by an incensed and racist cohort who expects Nick to fight the housing order, even though it is legal and will never be overturned, and disobeying it will bankrupt the city. Nick is not a simple, straightforward hero: He doesn’t come into office intent on doing the right thing, damn the consequences. He’s a cocky kid, tickled to be the county’s youngest big city mayor, who has to choose between being reasonable, responsible, and righteous or a recalcitrant, unrealistic bigot—when it is the latter choice that will let him keep his job. Nick does what is right. How he does this, and at what personal and professional expense, is the meat of Show Me a Hero, which, tellingly, gets its title from the F. Scott Fitzgerald quote, “Show me a hero, and I’ll write you a tragedy.”


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