UNITE-LA Mourns the Loss of Dr. Jeannie Oakes

Dear Friends,

UNITE-LA deeply mourns the loss of Dr. Jeannie Oakes, a true trailblazer in our nation's educational system. We are immensely proud and privileged to have called her our friend and colleague for many years.

At her core, Dr. Oakes embodied equity. UNITE-LA joined with Dr. Oakes and numerous partnering organizations to build an educational system where all youth, regardless of the color of their skin or any other defining characteristic, had true pathways to success. 

Dr. Oakes led the creation of Linked Learning, initially referred to as Multiple Pathways, with her book, "Beyond Tracking: Multiple Pathways to College, Career, and Civic Participation." This work set the foundation for Linked Learning to build pathways that merge the best of a college prep and career technical education for all students. Dr. Oakes also supported UNITE-LA's "We Choose All" efforts that aim to secure a great public-school option for every child in Los Angeles.

My predecessor, former UNITE-LA President, David Rattray, had the opportunity to work closely with Dr. Oakes for many years during his tenure at UNITE-LA. He noted, "Dr. Jeannie Oakes was not just a leader; she was a beacon of hope and inspiration for the pursuit of education equity. Her legacy will forever guide UNITE-LA in its mission to ensure every student has equal opportunities to succeed."

UNITE-LA will continue to collaboratively advance a shared vision of equitable economic mobility through education and workforce development with the determination and passion that would make Dr. Oakes proud.

In partnership,

Alysia Bell

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