District removes beloved middle school principal as it “co-locates” new charter on Oakland campus

Westlake Principal Misha Karigaca

In a move that has caused upheaval at Oakland’s Westlake Middle School, Oakland School Distict Supt. Antwan Wilson, affiliated with the controversial Broad Leadership Academy, removed popular 15 year school principal Misha Karigaca, explaining he wants a “fresh start” at the school that will “co-locate” a private charter on the same campus beginning next year.

Parents have joined Oakland Educators Association members (who spoke anonymously for fear of retaliation) that Karigaca has the “full support” of the staff for his strong leadership and innovation at the full-service community school. They blame the problem on a district decision to share the site with a charter school, a move the superintendent claims is mandated by state charter school law.

Teachers believe their principal is being punished for not keeping a lid on parent and teacher protests last June, when the district unsuccessfully tried to force the school to “co-locate” a charter high school at the site.