Ka’Dijah Brown was elected to Berkeley Unified School District (BUSD) School Board in November’s elections. She is an educator in Richmond, California.
She will be the youngest person to serve on the BUSD School Board, and the first active teacher. “This is what motivated me to run,” Brown said. She said that she wanted to offer “a younger, unique perspective.”
She believes her work as an educator will help inform this perspective. “As a classroom teacher, I experience first hand the decisions that school boards make,” said Brown. “I see how they are implemented and affect the classroom.” Brown attended Berkeley schools, and views serving on the school board as a way to give back to the community that educated her.
“I want to give back in a way that would deeply affect and change the Berkeley community as a whole,” she said.
While she serves on the school board, Brown’s main focal point will be BUSD’s achievement gap, which is one of the largest in the country. She is currently working on her masters in education, focusing on the achievement gap. Brown said she wants to “use all of her knowledge to help fix BUSD’s” achievement gap.
Brown is looking forward to working with the other members of the school board. Everyone on the board sees a unique side to Berkeley, and “they’re all so knowledgeable in so many different ways,” she said. “All of the members of the school board come from distinct backgrounds, but are united in their passion for improving the education [of] Berkeley’s students.”
Brown said she is excited about collaborating with the other board members, and “everything we’re going to do for Berkeley kids. I’m excited about all of us coming together, and making some phenomenal changes for our students,” Brown added.
Brown views the school board as the overarching umbrella of BUSD, and as a member of the board, her job is to create and uphold insightful policies that assist and improve the quality of education students are receiving.
“We know that our schools are embedded in our Berkeley community, and the school board working together helps our greater community,” Brown said. “Our community is only as good as our public schools, and so I want to make sure we have strong public schools that prepare its students for the future.”
As the youngest person ever elected to the school board, Brown wants to use the opportunity to be a role model for young people around her. She wants give youth the education, tools, and skills to become more active and involved members of their own communities. “Don’t let anyone try and tell you you’re too young or not ready,” Brown said.