Ida Louise Jackson
8.25 in HIGH x 7.25 in WIDE
(20.95 cm HIGH x 18.41 cm WIDE)
The Oakland Tribune Collection, the Oakland Museum of California. Gift of ANG Newspapers

People, Politics,Protest & Promise:African Americans in the News

Handwritten on the back of the photo, "Ida Louise Jackson, McClymonds High School teacher, first Negro teacher in California." The photograph is a portrait of Ms. Jackson sitting at a desk holding a pen in one hand and papers in front of her. She is sitting in an ornate chair with sheer drapes behind. She is wearing a dress with bows on each shoulder, and a beaded necklace with a cameo hanging from it. Excerpt from the Argus, January 31, 1989, article titled "An Uphill Battle: Early black Oakland educator was always fighting the system": "Educator Ida Jackson spent her life teaching more than reading, writing, and arithmetic. She taught her pupils about pride and prejudice. Jackson, Oakland's first black public school teacher and the state's first black high school instructor, was a pioneer. She faced racial discrimination at every bend during her younger years, from her days as a student up through her career as a teacher. ...Jackson was more than qualified when she began teaching at Oakland's Prescott Grammar School in 1924. She came with a bachelor's and master's degree from UC Berkeley and experience teaching home economics and English at Eastside High School in El Centro. ...In addition to establishing a black sorority in Berkeley, Jackson organized the first black YWCA in Oakland. She also directed professional stage productions in Oakland and Berkeley during the 1930s. In 1945, Jackson was appointed as an observer to the United Nations organizational meetings in San Francisco. In 1955, she resigned from teaching. ...Jackson is frustrated but not bitter. She still embodies a teacher's hope that education can change the world." This photograph was not used in the Oakland Tribune. (P.Lau, 8/2002) The History of McClymonds High School In January 1915, McClymonds High School began in a small building formerly occupied by Oakland Technical High School. Originally the school started with sixty students and was called Vocational High School. It was the first public school in California to offer summer school. About 1920, the name was changed to McClymonds Vocational School, honoring Mr. J.W. McClymonds, who served as superintendent of the Oakland Public Schools for many years. In 1923, the school moved to a new half million dollar building at the 26th and Myrtle Street, and the name was changed to the J.W. McClymonds High School. In 1927, with $325,000 spent on additional classrooms, the school became more of a regular school than a summer school. Then in 1933, the legislative act was passed, regulating school building construction. It said that schools should have steel and structural support on the inside. The building did not meet these requirements. The school decided to move again, this time back to 12th and Myrtle Street in the same building with Lowell Junior High School. McClymonds High thereby became a four year high school. The name changed from J.W. McClymonds to Lowell McClymonds and then to McClymonds Lowell High School. Finally in September 1938, the official name of the school became McClymonds High School. Though the school started with only a vocational instructional program, it has developed into a regular four year high school.

Used: Oakland Tribune

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