Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The taste of change in a Mission Elementary School

One drizzly Tuesday in San Francisco's Mission district, 20 second-graders squirm happily in anticipation of making "funny-faced sandwiches" with nutrition coordinator Meghan Elliott. Pitas present themselves for decoration; Elliott doles out hummus, cheddar cheese, apple slices, raw spinach, and raisins. "Hummus is kind of like healthy mayonnaise," she explains, as her mostly Latino students eye the mystery spread. "It's made from beans so it's really creamy and full of protein, so it's good for your…" Half of the class immediately responds: "Muscles!"

Read the whole article in Mother Jones.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Superintendent Garcia explains school choice in SF

7 Live interviewed Superintendent Garcia on the topic of picking a school for your child.
7 Live.

The flight of the Middle School Student . .

Where oh where do our students go? A discussion of how/why some families choose to leave Public Schools as their children get older. SF Chronicle.

National Inclusive Schools week celebrated in SF

Watch ABC 7 news' coverage of inclusion in SF schools. ABC7 News

SF Symphony celebrates Centennial, supports SF schools

The centennial year will mark an expansion of educational outreach, including instrumental training in every San Francisco high school through 12th grade, and a new program to encourage amateur musical activity among Symphony patrons.

"The Symphony needs to exist within an active music-making environment. That used to exist more in the schools and the home, but increasingly it's fallen to us to foster that."

Read more: SFGate.com

Bay Area Figures Startling In Latest High School Dropout Report

San Francisco bucks the drop out trend. Find out more CBS San Francisco

SF Concert Raises Money To Fight Bullying - News Story - KTVU San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO -- The 25th annual Concert for Kids sponsored by radio station KFOG in San Francisco at the Masonic Auditorium Tuesday night benefited a new cause this year: bullying.

Organizers said the beneficiary of this year's event was the Make It Better Project, a national effort started just two months ago to make schools safer for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students and others who are victims of bullying.

Read the story - KTVU San Francisco

Friday, December 3, 2010

Judges Talk to Students About the 'Color of Justice'

Balboa High School law academy students assembled in Judge Charlene Padovani Kiesselbach’s courtroom in San Francisco to hear a panel of judges and lawyers talk about 'the color of justice'. Read the whole story in The Recorder.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Preventing Dropout Effort Starts in Kindergarten

San Francisco Unified School District is putting more money into reducing the city’s 15.8% dropout rate with a $1 million federal grant that comes from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Read more on KQED's Mind Shift

Monday, November 29, 2010

Burton jumps on turnovers to move past Leadership

It’s hard to believe that any basketball team can overcome missing its first 15 shots from the floor, but that’s exactly what Burton High School’s girls’ team did in a 38-30 nonleague win over visiting Leadership on Saturday.

Read more at the San Francisco Examiner.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

International Studies Academy students get early Thanksgiving dinner

On Tuesday, families of students at the International Studies Academy will cook a Thanksgiving dinner for roughly 500 people.

As part of the annual Day of Sharing potluck, the dinner will feature turkeys and traditional side dishes served to students, staff and the Potrero Hill community beginning at 11:45 a.m.

Read more in The Examiner

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Turkeys on tour could be thankful - up for pardon

The President pardons a Turkey each Thanksgiving, so that it does not end up as someone's main course. Read about the Turkey's visit to a San Francisco school in the Chronicle.

School helps Glide Memorial Church with donations

Students from Sheridan Elementary School donated spoons, forks, knives and napkins to Glide Memorial Church to assist with providing a Thanksgiving meal to those who would otherwise be unable to share in the feast. Read more at KGO TV Channel 7

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

New Board of Education members are voted in

Two incumbents and one newcomer sat on top of a crowded field of 11 candidates running for three available seats on the San Francisco school board, with nearly all precincts reporting.

For more information read SFGate.com and the Examiner.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Commodore Sloat students wax poetical about the Giants

When an event as momentous as the Giants reaching the World Series occurs, mere accolades won't do. No, one needs something truly epic to commemorate the occasion.

And by epic, I mean class poetry assignments.

Commodore Sloat Elementary School in San Francisco had its third- and fourth-graders write baseball poems to honor their Giants. To read the poems at SFGate.com click here.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/hottopics/detail?entry_id=75508#ixzz13aALYp00

Friday, October 22, 2010

Mayor Newsom gets mobbed during his visit to Alamo elementary

Did you feel the electricity this morning? Mayor Gavin Newsom was in the Richmond District at Alamo Elementary School (250 23rd Avenue) today for the statewide “Shakeout” earthquake drill.

After ducking under a desk during the drill and communicating the importance of earthquake safety and preparedness,Newsom headed out into the schoolyard during recess.

To read more, visit the Richmond district blog.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Results of student mock elections

Students in the San Francisco Unified School District want to legalize marijuana, allow noncitizen parents to vote and reelected Hydra Mendoza to the school board, according results from a mock election held last week.

More than 8,000 high school students weighed in on one federal race, seven state races, three state propositions, four local propositions, the Board of Education and the Board of Supervisors.

Read more at the San Francisco Examiner:

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Garcia warns school cuts may not be over

Though California finally has a state budget, the superintendent of San Francisco schools warns the district it does not mean the cuts are over.

Superintendent Carlos Garcia told the members of the San Francisco Unified School District’s Board of Education Tuesday night that the “fine print” of the budget still needed to be reviewed and if the state does not get anticipated funding, more cuts could be on the way.

“This budget is based on optimistic assumptions that we will get federal money,” he said. “We could face cuts again if we don’t get it.”

Read more in the Examiner.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

June Jordan high school: success or failure?

June Jordan School for Equity has been touted as a shining star of San Francisco public high schools and a national example of how limiting enrollment and tailoring instruction to the needs of individuals can push struggling students into college.

The school, which opened seven years ago, boasts small class sizes and an adviser for every 16 students, plus a college counselor. June Jordan's funding of more than $11,000 for each of the 241 students, which comes from public and private sources, exceeds what most other district students get.

Read more in the SF Chronicle

SF creates city-funded account for school children

A new program to help youngsters pay for their college education is getting underway in San Francisco. It's called Kindergarten to College.

San Francisco is the first city in the nation to create a city-funded savings account for school children. The pilot program will kick off with 1,200 kindergartners or about one-fourth of those enrolled in public schools.

"The only way school districts are successful is when the entire city, communities get behind them and start believing in the children," San Francisco Schools Superintendent Carlos Garcia said.

Watch the story on ABC 7 News

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

S.F. 1st U.S. city to start college savings plan

Ingrid Lopez just started kindergarten at San
Francisco's Sanchez Elementary School, but she
already has big plans.

"She's saying, 'I will buy you a car, mom,' "
chuckled her mother, Julissa Cruz, who walks
or takes public transportation to pick up her daughter from the school near Dolores Park.

Read more in the San Francisco Chronicle

Teachers Petition Against Drop in Funding at Moscone Elementary

Teachers and parents at Moscone Elementary School are rallying together to petition their opposition to the school’s budget that is $47,000 less than last year because fewer students are enrolled.

Read more in the Mission Local

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thousands of Low-Income Bay Area Kids Get Free School Supplies

Federal stimulus money is helping 150,000 low income Bay Area students get bags full of school supplies. The first kits went out in San Francisco Thursday morning.

Hear more at KCBS.

SF Kids Eating Better

Students at San Francisco schools are showing marked improvements when it comes to eating healthy, thanks to the district’s nutritional program.

But Francisco Middle School Principal Judy Giampaoli said that wasn’t always the case.

Hear more at KCBS

SFUSD ahead in state test scores, not meeting federal standards

San Francisco schools are staying ahead of the state’s average standardized scores for the ninth year in a row, yet less than half of the district’s students are meeting standards under No Child Left Behind.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Digital books engage students during test drive

The drudgery of solving for X flew out the door of a Presidio Middle School classroom Friday as the giddy students traded in their back-breaking algebra textbooks for an iPad touch screen filled with integers and equations that came to life with the flick of a finger.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

City helps families save for college

San Francisco's Mayor Gavin Newsom comes to Junipero Serra Elementary School to announce college savings plan for families.

See the story on CNN.

Pleasant surprise for DonorsChoose.org, schools

Out of the blue, in the middle of a recession, the phone rang.

What would it cost, the caller asked the founder of DonorsChoose.org, to fund every California teacher's wish list posted on the Web site?

Read more in the Chronicle.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Low-performing schools get $45M in financial aid

San Francisco school officials at O’Connell High School in the Mission District praised a $45 million windfall for poor-performing schools on Tuesday, even as school officials across the state lamented the loss of hundreds of millions of federal stimulus dollars.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Mayor Newsom Asks For Community's Help In Reporting, Reducing Truancy

School district officials and representatives from the Police Department and community-based organizations joined San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom Tuesday to recruit community members to help in a new collaborative effort to reduce truancy in city schools.

See more at Fox News.

More students passing high school exit exam

Five years after high school students were first required to pass the exit exam to graduate, state data released Tuesday shows that more and more of them are passing the exam by the end of their senior year.

Read more in the Chronicle.

S.F. lawyer accused of fraud in autism care

A former partner at a well-known law firm and his marketing consultant wife were arrested Wednesday on felony charges of bilking the San Francisco school district and private insurers out of about $400,000 via fraudulent bills for treatment of their autistic son, officials say.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Extreme volunteering not the answer for schools

After Thursday's column on the difficulties of getting into a reasonably good San Francisco public school, a frustrated parent wrote to say that they'd tried to make it work, but were resigned to moving to the suburbs.

Read more: in the Chronicle

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Progress seen in student test results

If slow and steady wins the race, California schools will eventually emerge victorious in significantly raising student proficiency levels in math and English, but at the current pace, it will take years if not decades.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Truants threatened with legal action

High school students who ditch too many classes could face legal problems under a new strategy from District Attorney Kamala Harris to curb truancy.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Tough solutions for high school truancy rate

San Francisco's Truancy Reduction Initiative has been a success - albeit a qualified one. Over the past three-plus years, the program has improved attendance in the San Francisco Unified School District by about 33 percent.

Read more in the Chronicle.

S.F.'s low-performing Muir School starts over

John Muir Elementary School is officially one of the worst public schools in the state. Despite years of local, state and federal intervention that brought the school more money and additional staffing, it has failed to budge from the bottom of the barrel - a "1-1" school five years running, the lowest possible ranking when it comes to California's standardized test scores.

Read more in the Chronicle.

San Francisco freshmen on the college path

When the freshman class members of San Francisco high schools walk through the doors on their first day of school Monday, they will already be on the path to a college education.

Read more in the
SF Examiner.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Unexpected cash is cool for schools

San Francisco school kids may or may not be happy about Tuesday’s news – but teachers probably will be.

A federal stimulus passed by U.S. Congress on Tuesday will mean an unexpected cash infusion for school districts across the country, including San Francisco’s.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

SFUSD awarded foreign language grant

The San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) has been awarded a Foreign Language Assistance Program (FLAP) grant by the US Department of Education for Russian and Japanese heritage non-native English speakers enrolled in schools within the District.

Read more in Asian Week.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Federal bailout may help Bay Area teachers

The U.S. Senate cleared the way for $10 billion in emergency education aid to reach districts across the country before the start of the school year, saving or re-instating the jobs of hundreds of thousands of teachers.

View story on KGO-TV.

Reduced school year poised to return to normal

The four days erased from the school year in San Francisco classrooms could be penciled back in after the U.S. Senate passed an extension of a piece of the federal stimulus package.

Read more in the Examiner.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

School year shrinking as budget crisis grows

Just as education experts are encouraging more classroom time to improve student grades and test scores, many California districts are moving in the opposite direction by shortening their school year amid a sustained and draining budget crisis.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Public schools may increase job training

Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi's legislation that is intended to increase job-training curriculum in the San Francisco Unified School District comes before the Board of Supervisors Public Safety Committee on Monday.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

For parents, shortened school year raises anxieties and costs

For some low-income parents, the decision by many school districts to shorten the school year has raised anxieties about the extra costs it could impose on them.

Read more in the Los Angeles Daily News.

California OKs 'bad' schools list for transfers

The state Board of Education put a stamp of approval Thursday on a list of 1,000 schools deemed so bad that parents will have the right to transfer their children to a better school in their district or any other district - this school year.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Snack attack: Schools try to get the junk out

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — It's not hard to figure out that stocking school vending machines with sugary sodas and salty, fatty snacks is a bad idea. Replacing those culinary culprits with something more nutritious is tougher.

But a growing number of school districts around the country are trying anyway.

Read more at Google.com.

Summer students learn to Aim High

With state budget cuts turning summer school into the educational equivalent of the eight-track tape, struggling students have fewer free options available academically while many of their peers head off to costly camps or private programs.

Read more in the Chronicle

Monday, July 12, 2010

SF schools saving energy to save cash

SAN FRANCISCO — Saving on energy bills will net cash for San Francisco schools during a push for sustainability next school year. Nik Kaestner, director of sustainability for the San Francisco Unified School District, said schools that reduced their gas, heating, electric and water bills will get half of the savings put back into their budgets.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

A Classroom in a Garden

Richard Swerdlow's elementary school has a garden where students grow vegetables and flowers -- and get an education in science, math and much more.

Hear more on KQED.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

5 Bay Area schools receive school garden grants

Five Bay Area garden education programs landed grants to help boost their efforts to provide school children with healthy snacks, nutrition education and information about where their food comes from, according to a prepared statement from the Western Growers Foundation.

Read more in the SJ Mercury News.

S.F. to reform 9 schools, shut 1 to get grants

San Francisco will shut down one school and overhaul nine others in a bid for millions of dollars in federal funding to help turn around the city's lowest performing schools, district officials announced Friday.

Read more in the Chronicle.

San Francisco Flunks Failing Schools

San Francisco is shutting down one school and making changes to nine others as officials try to secure federal funding intended to boost the test scores of the city's worst performing students.

View story at NBCbayarea.com

SF to Close Willie Brown Academy; Reform 9 Others

San Francisco is shutting down one school and making changes to nine others as officials try to secure federal funding intended to boost the test scores of the city's worst performing students.

View story at KPIX.com

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Kids could be going to school closer to home if voters comply

As my mother likes to remind me during the holidays, I don’t have any children. This fact generally makes me reluctant to write about kid-related issues like education, but today I have to make an exception because I listed some possible ballot measures last week and inadvertently left one off the list: Students First.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

Lawsuit Aims to Overhaul Public School Funding

We're on the case! Stanford Law School's Bill Koski tells us about Robles-Wong v. California, a major lawsuit claiming the way California funds its public schools violates our state constitution.

See more at NBC Bay Area.

The Giving State: Skateboarding Students

In our occasional series profiling people who volunteer in California, we meet Shane Medanich, a San Francisco teacher who stays after school to supervise a skate park he built for students

Hear this story on KQED

Monday, June 28, 2010

Al lends a hand in San Francisco

With the hard-hit economy, many Americans are in need of a little help this year. That's why TODAY's Al Roker is packing up the Penske truck once again to hit the road for the annual "Lend a Hand" trip.

Serious talks about later school hours for HS kids

We told you that city high school students have been deemed “not morning people” by Board of Education members, who proposed changing the school day to begin one hour later.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

San Francisco Schools Prepare to Implement More Budget Tightening

Scroll down the list of stories to view at KRON4.com.

SFUSD cuts could impact gains

City schools will have fewer school days, programs, teachers and administrators, reducing their chances of maintaining the steady improvements made in recent years.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

SFUSD Cuts Mean a Shorter School Year

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) -- The school year in San Francisco just got four days shorter. The school board, Tuesday night, voted unanimously to pass a $578 million budget that makes up for a $113 million deficit.

Read more at KCBS.com.

San Francisco school board OKs layoffs, cuts

San Francisco school board members cited heavy hearts as they voted unanimously for a budget that bridges a two-year $113 million spending gap with a long list of cuts and layoffs across schools and district departments.

Read more in the SF Chronicle

Friday, June 18, 2010

Man charged with raping step-granddaughter

(06-17) 20:26 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- A 68-year-old man was arraigned Thursday on seven felony counts for allegedly raping his 8-year-old step-granddaughter at a San Francisco elementary school, District Attorney Kamala Harris said.

Read more in the

Friday, June 11, 2010

Relative held in girl's molestation at school

(6-11) 12:23 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- A man wanted for allegedly assaulting his step-graddaughter at her San Francisco elementary school in an attack that was captured on video was arrested Thursday night, police said.

Read more in the SF Chronicle.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Teacher Layoffs

See KRON 4 coverage here.

Proposition A: Schools Tax Renewed for Two Decades

SAN FRANCISCO - A special property tax to fund capital improvements for SFUSD - including seismic work, fire and safety upgrades, and other maintenance - was approved.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

SFUSD Tries to Curb Truancy at Elementary Level

SAN FRANCISCO - High absenteeism in elementary schools has come into focus as the San Francisco Unified School District loses hundreds of thousands of dollars each year in state funding.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

SFUSD: Furlough Days Next Year Will Give Students Four Long Weekends

See KRON 4 coverage here.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Nutritious Food to be Rolled Out Across SF District

San Francisco Unified School District is rolling out a new plan this coming school year that will allow all students access to healthier, more balanced meals regardless of their family income level.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

Police Alert Border Patrol in Search for Elementary School Sexual Assault Suspect

San Francisco police are stepping up efforts to locate a 68-year-old man believed to have sexually assaulted his 8-year-old step-granddaughter at her school Thursday.

Read more at KRON 4

Educators Are Opposed to Obama’s School Plan

When Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced last week that California was submitting a new bid for hundreds of millions of dollars in financing under President Obama’s education initiative, Race to the Top, he could not resist a Hollywood joke.

Read more in the New York Times.

Proposed law would make 4-year-old kids wait to start school

See Dick wait to start kindergarten. Wait, Dick, wait.

A bill pending in the Legislature would force 4-year-olds to wait a year for kindergarten, a measure aimed at helping kids get ready for the rigors or reading, writing and 'rithmatic.

Read more in the Chronicle.

Hey Teachers! Leave Those Kids Alone When They Ask to Use Restroom

Schoolchildren in The City who need to use the restroom during class shouldn’t be barred or delayed from doing so, praised or academically rewarded for not doing so, or made to say what exactly they plan to do in the bathroom, according to a new Board of Education proposal.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

School Furloughs Mean Four Longer Weekends

SAN FRANCISCO — In an announcement that likely received cheers from students and jeers from parents, the San Francisco Unified School District has chosen four days next school year in which schools will be shut down to save money.

Read more at the SF Examiner.

Friday, June 4, 2010

San Francisco teacher to bike to Washington, DC to improve public schools

Kelly Clark, a teacher from Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy, is biking for education. The fifth grade teacher will pedal 3,200 miles to Washington, D.C., where she will advocate for public education and the need to make it a national priority. On her 44-day bike trip, she will tap people for new and fresh ideas on how to improve public schools. She leaves on the last day of school — June 4. Watch her journey across the country at: http://www.weride3000.com/.

High school interns still looking for summer jobs

SAN FRANCISCO — After the final school bell rings today, some students in The City will be eager to forgo summer rest for internships at local businesses.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Five Hundred Students Help Clean Up SF's Ocean Beach

Bay Area students are gathered on SF's Ocean Beach with a special message on International Ocean Day.

See coverage KGO-TV coverage here.

Grandfather Wanted in Videotaped Sexual Assault

A $2 million arrest warrant has been issued for a man wanted on suspicion of sexually assaulting a young family member on the campus of Sanchez Elementary School, according to a police spokesman.

See KTVU coverage here.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

For SF Parents, Open Enrollment Yields Hope, Then Exasperation

It was the first morning of June in San Francisco, but the men at the head of the line were standing glumly in their winter jackets, cupping their coffees, their beanies pulled low.

Read more in The Bay Citizen.

Garcia helps form Race to the Top application

San Francisco school chief Carlos Garcia has been skeptical in the past about accepting federal money if it means that city schools would have to adhere to prescriptive federal reform measures.

Read more in the SF Examiner.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

SF school district cracking down on address fraud

SAN FRANCISCO — Parents who lie about where they live to send their kids into public schools in The City are being caught at a greater rate and shelling out for hefty fines as the result of a heightened crackdown on address fraud.

Read more in the San Francisco Examiner.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

In the News: Panda advises kids to get fit

Nicknamed after a pudgy animated panda, Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval kicked off a campaign Wednesday to promote physical fitness to schoolchildren.

Read more at SFGate.com.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Schools labor tiff seemingly settled

San Francisco school officials and the teachers union put the finishing touches on a tentative contract agreement earlier this week staving off a threatened strike and easing what had been tense times in the district.


ScholarMatch.org Offers Aid to Needy Students

The 80 or so stories that students posted on a new San Francisco-based Web site are for the most part deeply personal, summing up tales of family struggle, tragedy and perseverance.

Read more at SFGate.com.

Opponents stay quiet as 1st Milk Day nears

For all the fuss made over passing a Harvey Milk Day into law, the first-ever statewide celebration to honor the slain gay rights leader Saturday has garnered little complaint from opponents.

Read more at SFGate.com.

CA lawsuit seeks to overhaul school finance system

A coalition of students, school districts and education groups sued the state of California on Thursday, seeking to force the governor and Legislature to develop a new system to fund its cash-strapped public schools.

Read more here.

SF Schools Put State Funding on Trial

San Francisco public schools chief Carlos Garcia was among those at the forefront of a historic lawsuit filed Thursday against Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the state of California that demands leaders stop underfunding education.

Read more at SFExaminer.com.

Schools, students sue state over funding

More than 60 children and nine school districts across California filed a historic lawsuit Thursday, arguing that elected officials have failed in their constitutional obligation to support public schools.

Read more at SFGate.com.

California Districts, Students Sue Over Budget Cuts

See the ABC 7 report, May 20, 2010.

Californians Sue to Restore School Funding

Covered in KQED's California Report for Friday, May 21, 2010.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

In the News: City’s shield against school budget cuts weakening

When budget time rolls around each year, public schools in The City are told they may lose teachers and vital services while cramming more kids into classrooms — all because of neverending financial problems at the state level.

Read more in the San Francisco Examiner

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

SF teachers rally against looming layoffs

San Francisco teachers marched through city streets Tuesday night en route to a contentious Board of Education meeting where union members called for the school district to rescind layoff notices sent to some 900 educators.

Watch coverage at KTVU 2 ...

S.F. school district, teachers at impasse

Efforts to close a huge budget shortfall in San Francisco schools came to a grinding halt this week, as teachers walked away from the bargaining table, prompting district officials to declare an impasse.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

S.F. State backs off ethnic studies offer

San Francisco State University officials have backpedaled on a pledge to give college credit to ninth-graders who take an ethnic studies course after university students, professors and top brass at the college questioned the idea.

Read more in the S.F. Chronicle ...

Monday, March 29, 2010

Maufas' daughter took items, superintendent says

The 22-year-old daughter of a San Francisco school board member stole a district laptop and $250 from another school board member and a district staff member while her mother attended board meetings in the same building, district officials confirmed Friday.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, March 26, 2010

5 S.F. school principals under fire

Five principals at the helm of struggling San Francisco schools will be forced within the next few weeks to make a gut-wrenching choice: Fight for their jobs - a battle that could cost their schools millions of dollars - or leave.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

41 years after the SFSU Strike

At a recent meeting of the San Francisco School Board, over 100 students and their supporters urged the commissioners to establish an ethnic studies pilot program in the city’s high schools. In a district where 90% of the students are people of color, the students argued their education should reflect their diverse histories and cultures.

Listen to the story at KALW ...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

San Francisco School Food News

Want to learn more about student nutrition services in San Francisco public schools? Check out the San Francisco School Food News Blog.

Bay Area teachers feel the wrath of pink slips

School districts around the Bay Area are sending layoff notices to thousands of school teachers. San Francisco Unified is handing out the most pink slips in the Bay Area and that also includes administrators. All the safety nets are no longer there, so all of the layoffs are about to become permanent.

Watch the story at ABC 7 ...

Friday, March 12, 2010

5 Bay Area schools off worst-in-state list

Two San Francisco high schools were removed from the list of the 5 percent lowest-performing schools in the state Thursday - a welcome reprieve, but one that will cost them up to $6 million each.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

S.F. adopts new school-assignment system

The San Francisco school board Tuesday adopted a new system for assigning students to schools, a hybrid plan that immediately came under fire for failing to pick a side in a long-running battle between neighborhood schools and diverse schools.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

12 SF campuses appear on list of low-performing schools

San Francisco school officials are lambasting a controversial list released Monday by the state that labeled 12 schools in The City among the lowest-performing in California.

Read more at the San Francisco Examiner...

Tough choices for 12 S.F. schools in bottom 5%

Across California, 188 schools got the news Monday that they were the lowest of the low-performing schools - a designation that will require them to be closed, converted to a charter school or be subject to a complete overhaul of instruction and staff, starting with the principal.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Young men on a mission at Mission High School

As he watched his city champions warm up for Monday's practice, coach Arnold Zelaya explained how the Mission High boys basketball team came together. The story does not have a pretty beginning.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Monday, March 8, 2010

Vote on S.F. school assignment plan Tuesday

After years of debate, delay and endless controversy, the San Francisco school board will vote Tuesday on a new student assignment system - a hybrid plan that offers choice, prioritizes proximity to a school and addresses the needs of struggling students.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Advocates Argue School Lunches Could Be Healthier And Cheaper

Watch report at KTVU 2 ...

School Let Kids Out To Recess Before Lunch

Recess is often the highlight of the day for many students, including some at Sunnyside Elementary, in San Francisco. Up until this school year, the school’s 263 students were turned loose after lunch. But now it's the other way around.

Watch video at KTVU 2 ...

Civic Center protest huge, peaceful

Thousands of all ages gather at San Francisco's Civic Center Plaza to protest the education cuts.

Watch at ABC 7 ...

Monday, March 1, 2010

College credit for 9th-grade ethnic studies

San Francisco high school students, just months out of middle school, can start earning San Francisco State college credit this fall through a ninth-grade ethnic studies course.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Ideas aplenty to deal with cuts at S.F. schools

Anger and frustration simmered among the people in a standing-room-only crowd Thursday night at a town hall meeting at San Francisco's Marina Middle School, as parents demanded solutions rather than explanations for the severe cuts to staff and programs at their children's schools.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

PTA moms drive grass-roots movement

A group of San Francisco moms showed the power of grass-roots organizing on Thursday night. They were so angry when they heard about San Francisco's dramatic plan to cut the school budget, they decided to hold a town hall meeting on the issue. The turn-out shocked even them.

Watch more at ABC 7 ...

Thursday, February 25, 2010

New incentive for SF students to learn several languages

If you can read, speak and write in more languages than one by the time you graduate high school, you should get an extra star on your diploma.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

SF arts school named after famous artist

Following a heartfelt meeting Tuesday in which tears were shed by a member on the Board of Education, the board voted to rename San Francisco’s School of the Arts High School the Ruth Asawa San Francisco High School of the Arts.

Read more at the SF Examiner ...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Ethnic studies seen as smart move despite deficit

While considering hundreds of layoffs and other cutbacks to close an epic budget gap, the Board of Education on Tuesday unanimously agreed to fund a pilot program adding ethnic studies courses to its high school curriculum.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

S.F. school board votes to send pink slips out

Nearly 900 San Francisco teachers and administrators will see a dreaded pink slip in their mailboxes next month, a mass mailing made necessary bythe district's need to brace for a $113 million shortfall over the next two years

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

SF school board votes to cut 900 teachers

More painful school cuts must be made in San Francisco. The district has to slash more than $100 million from its budget and that means hundreds of jobs will be lost. A school board meeting is underway right now to discuss the options.

Watch video at ABC 7 ...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

New Plan on School Selection, but Still Discontent

After years of complaints from parents, the San Francisco Unified School District has just taken a serious step toward revamping its well-meaning but labyrinthine student-assignment system, which decides the educational homes for tens of thousands of children.

Read more in the New York Times ...

Over 900 pink slips likely for S.F. schools

More than 900 San Francisco schoolteachers, administrators and other staff members - nearly twice that of last year - are in line to receive layoff notices in the next few weeks as district officials prepare to cover a worst-case budget scenario next year.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Students can stay closer to home

For the first time in decades, the City’s schoolchildren could be automatically enrolled in their neighborhood public schools.

Read more from the San Francisco Examiner ...

S.F. school board OKs new gay support program

The San Francisco school board added to the district's massive $113 million shortfall over the next two years by voting Tuesday night to fund a substantial increase in instruction and services related to gay and lesbian issues.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Newcomer High targeted for closure

Despite general assurances that the district wouldn't be closing any schools next year, San Francisco school officials said Monday they will recommend shutting Newcomer High School.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Revamp simplifies S.F. school choice

A school assignment system that for nearly a decade has failed to desegregate San Francisco's public schools while frustrating parents in its complexity is about to be replaced.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Going Green and Going Global

A San Francisco student talks about attending the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcbayarea.com/video.

Schools could rent out fields to earn revenues

In this hard economic time, everyone is looking for creative ways to deal with budget cuts.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

We're on YouTube!

Check out our YouTube page to see some of the exciting things students and teachers are doing in SF public schools.

Why I love my S.F. public school: Alvarado

I love Alvarado because the colorful school work on the walls, the shrieks of joy at recess and the camaraderie in the halls tells me our students are getting a quality education that prepares them for middle school and beyond---they are prepared to be citizens of the world.

Read more on SFGate ...

High schoolers may have choice of campus

San Francisco students entering high school would continue to choose what school they want to attend rather than be assigned to the campus closest to them under a proposal to revamp the student- assignment process.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

District begins shake-up of assignment system

San Francisco school officials on Tuesday discussed options to overhaul the unpopular student-assignment system for elementary and middle schools, including possibly sending students to the school that is closest to their homes.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

SF middle school jumps for Guiness World Record

80,000 California students are hoping to "jump" right into the record books.

Read more from ABC 7 ...

It may take a lawsuit to preserve schools

On Tuesday night at the San Francisco Board of Education meeting my administration brought forward a preliminary budget proposal that encompassed the next two fiscal years and contains cuts of a magnitude never seen in California public education to date. To say it is a bleak outlook would grossly underestimate the size of the tsunami that is about to hit not only San Francisco's schools but the entire state education system. Yes, these cuts will be greater than those imposed after Prop. 13 and even greater than those experienced during the Great Depression.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Raise your hand if you're a pencil pusher, please

With the school district facing a $113 million deficit and Superintendent Carlos Garcia calling for labor unions to give serious concessions to close the gap, there have been increasingly loud demands to cut the district's central office instead of schools or teachers.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Summer school was so last century

The San Francisco school board voted to severely cut summer school classes to help bridge a $113 million budget shortfall over the next two years.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Why I love my S.F. public school

This morning the Chronicle ran a story reporting that San Francisco schools are facing a $113 million budget shortfall over the next two years -- a staggering figure that would mean layoffs, cuts to popular programs like summer school and increases in class size.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

San Francisco school truancy program gets grant

A day after San Francisco school officials outlined a desperate plan to cut costs that included boosting class sizes and cutting summer school, city leaders on Wednesday countered with an announcement of new federal funds to help chronically truant students get back on track.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

$113 million, 2-year, S.F. schools cut asked

San Francisco's school Superintendent Carlos Garcia laid out his plan Tuesday to bridge an expected $113 million budget shortfall over the next two years, describing it as a long list of "horrible and deplorable" cuts that rival those experienced during the Great Depression.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, January 22, 2010

Funding Our Future: Town Hall Meeting

San Francisco Unified School District is facing an unprecedented budget crisis. Join a coalition of parents and city organizations in a discussion moderated by KQED's Michael Krasny.

Read more ...

In the News: Cuts needed amid S.F. schools' $113 million gap

San Francisco schools are facing a $113 million budget shortfall over the next two years - a staggering figure that would mean layoffs, cuts to popular programs like summer school and increases in class size.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

In the News: Schools switch sugars in chocolate milk

Berkeley Farms is swapping the type of sugar it uses in the nonfat chocolate milk it ships to schools after San Francisco parents complained that the high-fructose corn syrup added to sweeten the milk is unhealthy for their children - a switch that does nothing to improve the nutritional value, experts say.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

In the News: State joins federal Race to the Top

When President Obama talks about turning around the lowest performing schools in the country with the Race to the Top education reform effort, he's talking about schools like San Francisco's Malcolm X Academy.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, January 15, 2010

In the News: New leadership, new rules on the school board

The school board gavel changed hands this week as the seven commissioners elected Jane Kim to the presidency and Hydra Mendoza as the vice president at their meeting Tuesday.

Read more in SF Chronicle ...

In the News: Summer classes face budget ax

Budget cuts likely will ax summer classes as The City’s school district makes moves to close a multimillion-dollar budget shortfall.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

Monday, January 11, 2010

In the News: Principal boots cop over student's arrest

A San Francisco police officer was ordered out of John O'Connell High School for arresting an alleged gang member in connection with a double homicide without first consulting the principal.

Read more in the SF Chronicle ...

Friday, January 8, 2010

Parents select schools, await fate

It took three months of touring a dozen of San Francisco’s public kindergarten programs for one mother to narrow her list to the maximum seven elementary schools allowed on the district’s school assignment application.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...

In the news: SFUSD may refuse federal funding if strings attached

The San Francisco Unified School District is expected to sign up to receive federal funding under President Barack Obama’s new Race to the Top initiative, but Superintendent Carlos Garcia said it would pull out of the program if it’s reform measures are too strict.

Read more in the SF Examiner ...