Increase to the Public Education Enrichment Fund approved
On March 21, the San Francisco Board of Education approved a $3.9 million increase to Public Education Enrichment Fund (PEEF) programs in the SFUSD budget, as the city has a projected increase in funds for PEEF.
The additional funds will support the expansion of programs and create new positions in areas funded by PEEF, including school sports, libraries, arts, music, and student wellness.
$1.7 million of the new investments will go toward expanding and deepening supports for students, including the creation of a Bayview Support Plan for student and families. The plan includes a partnership with CityYear to provide tutoring, youth development, and other schoolwide supports. Funding will also support student exhibitions and family engagement events in the Bayview in partnership with community-based organizations.
Other increases the PEEF budget include:
- New positon in the Physical Education department to support development of Special Olympic Events and to facilitate the use of inclusive practices in physical activity and physical education classes
- Expansion of the Family Academy to provide SFUSD families, school staff and community-based organizations with resources and information on how to best support student learning
- Middle School Redesign project, which will create greater access to arts classes
- Expansion of early mental health supports for Early Education schools
The PEEF budget for next school year is approximately $68.5 million.
In March of 2004, San Francisco voters approved the ballot initiative Proposition H. The passage of Proposition H established the Public Education Enrichment Fund (PEEF) as law within the City Charter, Section 16.123.1-10. PEEF provides critical funding to improve the quality of education for the youth of San Francisco.
In November of 2014, Proposition C, the "Children and Families First" initiative was passed by a majority of voters. Passage of Proposition C guaranteed funding for PEEF and the Children and Youth Fund (formerly known as the Children's Fund) through 2041 without any increases to taxes.
The fund is supervised by the PEEF Community Advisory Committee.
Physical Education and Athletics
Because of the fund, all elementary schools now have a credentialed PE teacher working alongside and coaching elementary schoolteachers at least one day a week. Prior to 2004-05, there were no credentialed physical education teachers serving elementary schools. In 2016-17, PEEF funded 44 specialists to work alongside students’ regular classroom teachers. Students in grades 6 through 12 now have access to fitness labs and curriculum that helps them develop fitness plans, as well as the ability to participate in fitness exercises and activities and assess progress toward their fitness goals.
PEEF funding has also contributed to an overall increase in the number of paid athletic coaches at SFUSD. In 2004-05, the year before PEEF funding began, SFUSD had 458 paid athletic coaches; now there are more than 600.
PEEF has funded credentialed teacher librarians, professional development, upgrades in technology, and library collections that are current, relevant, engaging, and accessible to all students. The number of full-time-equivalent credentialed teacher librarians serving school sites has more than tripled since 2004, as has the number of library books checked out by SFUSD students. The percentage of schools with a library and credentialed librarian has grown from 23 percent to 100 percent.
PEEF funds social workers and nurses who provide site-based services to improve the social and emotional learning of students in kindergarten through 8th grade. Beyond that, all public high school students are served by the San Francisco Wellness Initiative, which provides free, confidential services to students, including behavioral health services, counseling, nursing services, support and empowerment groups, reproductive health services, youth leadership programs, and links to community health resources.
PEEF also provides equal access to information and services for parents with limited English proficiency by maintaining and expanding translation and interpretation services in Chinese and Spanish, as well as Tagalog, Russian, Vietnamese, Arabic, and Samoan.
Visual and performing arts
PEEF funds are used to support staffing arts programs, arts-related field trips, and professional development, and to purchase arts supplies and musical instruments. During the most recent recession, as other funding sources declined, PEEF allowed SFUSD to increase the percentage of elementary schools staffed with a credentialed arts teacher from 40 percent to now 100 percent.