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About our School

Our Mission


At Sankofa United Elementary School all students engage in a rigorous academic program, enriched with music and art. We meet students where they are and position them to excel. Through the development of social-emotional skills, students learn to be in positive, respectful relationships that celebrate our similarities and our differences. We are creating a learning environment that is welcoming and reflective of all students’ and families’ abilities, cultures, and identities.



Our Vision


The vision of Sankofa United Elementary School is to nurture well-rounded people who are advocates for themselves and their learning. The Sankofa United community reflects the diversity of Oakland. Our students understand they are connected to and feel responsible for their community, and they know they are part of something bigger than themselves.

School Leadership Team


Dr. Charquita Arnold


Hi Sankofa United. My name is Dr. Charquita Arnold and I am happy to serve as principal this year. I received my doctorate degree in Educational Leadership and Management in 2022. I am a member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. and a proud graduate of a historically black college/university (HBCU). My heart is deeply rooted in equity work and the pursuit of justice for ALL our students. I chose Sankofa because I saw the beauty and depth of our community. I saw the future the first day I walked into the school. I saw a real opportunity to collaborate, unite, and partner for the betterment of our children. I latched on to the idea that this village can help each child thrive. Included above is a photo from my wedding in August 2020. I chose this picture to communicate the power of family and where my source of strength comes from. I am happy to partner with the families of Sankofa students and work together to achieve great things. Looking forward to an amazing year.

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Erica Macklin
Community School Manager

Erica Macklin has worked with students and families for over a decade with the Oakland Unified School District. Throughout her career she has held many roles in leadership from a paraeducator to Resources Specialist. She has been on the Sankofa campus since 2014 as an advocate for students, families, and the community at large. 

As the Sankofa United Community School Manager, her role is critical in integrating the partnership work of the school with its academic mission. Erica serves as a high-level administrator by managing, leading, and coordinating the community work to support school and student needs. This work is accomplished by conducting ongoing needs assessments to provide proper alignment with school, student and family core values. Mrs. Macklin serves with a strong equity lens and strives for equality in education for all students. 

Erica earned a bachelors degree from Holy Names in Oakland, California and is a wife and mother of two daughters.


Elissa Moriarty
Teacher on Special Assignment

Elissa Moriarty is a passionate elementary educator, with ten years of classroom teaching experience in 1st through 4th grade and twelve years as a mentor and coach to teachers. She is committed to the well-being of students and supporting teachers in maximizing their students' learning through equitable, high-quality instruction. Elissa brings a wealth of knowledge and perspective that drives her practice. She has worked in a variety of settings, including OUSD, an urban charter school, and independent schools, collaborating with teachers and school leadership to transform instruction and culture. Her work is rooted deeply in equity and social emotional learning, finding ways to raise the voices and meet the needs of all students. Elissa is committed to transforming the educational experience of students by leading teachers in their own growth, resilience, and understanding of how to best serve their students. Elissa has been working in OUSD since 2018 and is the proud mother of two Sankofa United scholars! 

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Derrick Wesby
After School Program Coordinator

Derrick Wesby, affectionately known as ¨Mr. D",  is the Bay Area Community Resources After School Program Coordinator.


Derrick began his career with BACR in 2006 on the Sankofa campus as an instructor.  Derrick has over 15 years experience within the education and social justice realm and has held titles such as  program assistant, intervention specialist, and resource specialist.   Derrick supports students, families and staff through programs that not only enrich student academic learning but also support student social emotional growth. 


Derrick’s mission is to provide a safe space for youth, support student agency, and advocate for the Sankofa United community. 


Derrick has received many awards and accolades including the 2019 Superintendent Recognition Award. Derrick is a proud father and community member who is committed to social change in the community.

About our PTA

Meeting the needs of all our students

The Sankofa United PTA was officially founded in 2020, after the merger of Sankofa Academy and Kaiser Elementary. Our mission is to meet the needs of all students at the school. In this extraordinary year, we have focused on building community and supporting the students most affected by the pandemic and distance learning.

PTA Leadership

Nadia Rodriguez


Bre Joiner

Community Engagement Co-Chair

Jay Castle

Vice President

Victoria Gambrell

Community Engagement Co-Chair

Anne Mills


PTA Executive Committee

Dr. Charquita Arnold

Jay Castle

Victoria Gambrell

Bre Joiner

Erica Macklin

Anne Mills

Nadia Rodriguez

Peter Wilson

PTA Committees


Community Building

We create opportunities for Sankofa United families to build an inclusive and respectful community together while having fun and building trust.


Campus Beautification

As a proud North Oakland neighbor, we're committed to caring for our school's campus. This group collaborates to create opportunities for families to care for, improve and enjoy our campus.

Image by Scott Gummerson
Meeting Minutes

Our meetings are open to all members of the Sankofa United community! We encourage all families to join the PTA and have an active voice in everything we do to support the school. The minutes (notes) from all our meetings can be found here.

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