Each day when I drop my son off to school, Jeff, Vidrale, or Miguel greet us, open the car door, and take him in. “Buenos Dias!” The day begins. He then heads to the playground for the daily drumming call and response ceremony in which he joins the whole school in opening the learning for the day by remembering that they are phenomenal and intelligent and that the school is a family. After spending 20 years in education, I believe that the transitions between home and school are often the make or break moments for kids, and when I think about how Asim enters the day, I get tears in my eyes. Asim loves his school so much so that the actual tone of his voice has changed since he came to RiC. He is the loudest singer of the good morning songs and had his first solo in a schoolwide performance. He has also become a learning machine. In his preschool, his teachers sometimes wondered if he was understimulated. At RiC, you can’t hold him back. I think it’s because they combine the best of home and community with the best of what school has to offer. Love is at the core of every action, every learning moment starting from the way they enter to the way they learn and what they learn about. They also don’t play when it comes to academic rigor. These are seasoned teacher drawn from across the country because of the quality of their teaching– such a unique and powerful approach that actually emphasizes the humans that will be doing the teaching. It’s a new school, and there are kinks to work out, but far less than i had imagined. For us, we feel blessed to have found this place for our son to blossom and for us to join a community of Oakland families and educators that represent the best of our city.
Asha Mehta, RIC Parent




On Friday morning, Shai’s Mom got out of the car and told me that the night before they had gone out to dinner. While they were waiting to be seated, Shai walked away and climbed on top of a rock. He closed his eyes and began to meditate. His Mom walked over to him and asked, “what are you doing?” He opened his eyes and responded, “I’m attempting to achieve inner peace”.

Below is the picture she took of the moment.

Her accompanying text to me read: “I’m so pleased with his academic and spiritual growth! He is tapped in!”
Jeff Duncan-Andrade & RIC Parent


Finding the perfect kindergarten program for Shai has been a dream of mine since the moment I found out I would be his mother. When he was in my stomach I would dream of his first day of school, friends, and teachers. So naturally when the time came to decide where Shai would go, I filled with joy, excitement, and a little anxiety. Late one night after combing through the lists of charter schools on the OUSD website. I saw the link for Roses In Concrete Community School, and I said to myself, “like the Tupac poem?!”. After seeing their website. I just got the best feelings because I knew this was the place Shai needed to start his educational journey.

Fast forward 7 months… Shai has grown tremendously in all areas! I am so impressed with his intense love and respect for school. He values all the relationships that he has made at Roses, and he is always finding ways to strengthen them. I am especially thankful for Reena and Erika, the work that they have put in with all the kinder students and their families is nothing short of amazing. Shai’s village and I are looking forward to what the future holds for him here at Roses. Thank you all for the amazing work that you are doing! The love that the staff has for the children shows in so many ways. I am proud the be a parent of a rosebud!
Mychal Skipper, RIC Parent