From the Desk of the Superintendent

March 2020

3/2/20 - Celebrating National School Breakfast Week

As part of National School Breakfast Week, we’re celebrating the impact breakfast has on our students and highlighting our goals to increase access across the district.

February 2020

2/23/20 - Participating in the 2020 Census with SF public schools

2020 is the year of the Census, and San Francisco public schools are making sure that everyone in SF counts! Every 10 years, the federal government is required by law to count every person that lives in the United States. This process is known as the Census, and our public schools receive federal funding based on how many people are in San Francisco. Here are a few things you should know about how it works:

2/16/20 - Kicking off the budgeting process with the School Planning Summit

Each year we submit a budget to the State and that budget is created with community input. One way that input is gathered is through School Site Councils. While they meet year round, the budgeting process is formally launched next week when school site leaders and community stakeholders meet for the School Planning Summit to work together as a team to create a strategic plan for their school.

2/9/20 - Budgeting to ensure students are prepared for college and careers

With tax time just around the corner, you might be thinking even more than usual about your finances. At the San Francisco Unified School District, finances are also a major topic on our minds.

2/3/20 - Celebrating Black History Month with SF public schools

Throughout the month of February, San Francisco public schools will host a multitude of lessons, events, performances and more to celebrate black excellence.

January 2020

1/26/20 - SFUSD made big gains for black students in 2019

In 2015 we formed the African American Achievement and Leadership Initiative (AAALI), which just released its 2019 Annual Report, showing the progress and the improvement areas that have emerged over the past several years. Allow me to share some of the bright spots.

1/19/20 - Helping to mentor an SF public school student

It’s National Mentoring Month and a chance to share my gratitude that here in San Francisco several great community organizations recruit, train and support mentors who support our City’s youth.

1/12/20 - Deadline to apply for SF public schools rapidly approaching

Here in San Francisco, we have a choice-based enrollment system, which means families have the opportunity to choose which public schools they would like their children to attend. This is different than how it worked back when a lot of us were kids, so I get questions about it. Here are some of them.

1/6/20 - Our vision is clear in the new year

Every new year brings a chance to reflect, consider where we’ve been and where we want to go. Fortunately, at SFUSD we’re clear about where we’re headed: we’re redefining school for the 21st century for each and every child.

December 2019

12/16/19 - SFUSD's grad rate increases to 89%

​As a school district we use many measures for how well we educate students. Looking at data is important not just to gauge the effectiveness of our programs, curriculum, and strategies for student achievement but also to ensure we’re putting our limited resources to the best possible use. Graduation rates are one of those important data points, and the California Department of Education just released the 2019 graduation rates for school districts across the state.

12/9/19 - Students learning to use technology for good

At SFUSD, we recognize the importance of computer science education even if students don’t plan to pursue computer science as a career path. This week, thousands of SFUSD students are celebrating Computer Science Education Week.

12/2/19 - SF schools chart the course for inclusion

This week, we’re taking time to celebrate something that’s at the core of what public schools are about. We have inclusive schools, which means we include everyone — and I mean everyone — in our classrooms and our schoolyards.

November 2019

11/22/19 - Giving Thanks

I strongly believe in the importance of ensuring each and every child has access to an awesome public education.  If you’re reading this, we likely share this belief. Today I want to express that I am thankful for you and for our community for supporting our public schools.  

11/18/19 - Making the most of parent-teacher conferences

You’ve probably heard it before but I want to say it again: Parents are a child’s first teacher. I’d like to add that parents are a child’s most influential teacher. That’s why when teachers and parents team up to support and educate a child, amazing learning can happen.

11/11/19 - SFUSD champions efforts to protect, support transgender students

On the first day of November, San Francisco officials raised a special flag at City Hall: the Transgender Flag, in honor of Trans Awareness Month. It’s no secret that San Francisco is a leader in celebrating diversity, and our schools have also been nationwide leaders in affirming the rights of transgender and nonbinary students.

11/4/19 - SFUSD rethinks school assignment system

As an educator and parent, I know that where you send your child to school is an important decision. There are many different factors parents consider when selecting their child’s school, from location to program offerings, but generally speaking we parents want our children to be safe and supported and to receive a well-rounded top-notch education.

October 2019

10/28/19 - ​SFUSD celebrates Filipino American History Month

​Kamusta! That’s “hello” in Tagalog, one of the six languages most frequently spoken by our SFUSD students and families. If you’re in our schools, you may have heard this and other Tagalog words even more throughout the month of October as many of our schools have joined in celebrating Filipino American History Month. Read more.

10/21/19 - ​Celebrating a brand new state-of-the-art school kitchen

​The other day I enjoyed a truly delicious lunch with food from many different cultures. There were multiple entrees to choose from: Oven-fried rice with egg rolls, crunchy tacos, caprese salads, and fresh turkey sandwiches. Sides included organic tomato soup, carrots, melon, and a variety of whole fruits. Read more.

10/14/19 - ​Preparing students for the digital world

​We all know that being safe and successful in the digital world is now essential knowledge. That’s why this week schools across the City will be teaching lessons related to digital citizenship. Read more.

10/7/19 - ​A new approach to testing

​In SFUSD we realize the importance of using multiple methods to assist us in understanding what a student knows and can do. I want to share one of those methods with you, formative and summative assessments. Read more.

September 2019

9/30/19 - SFUSD celebrates Latinx Heritage Month

Our schools strive to be places where every student can see themselves and be themselves, where learning reflects both the familiar and unknown. Read more.

9/23/19 - SFUSD alumni leading the Bay Area

The year 1979 was important for San Francisco. I graduated from high school. Voters elected the City’s first female mayor. And, San Francisco Peer Resources was created to train students as first responders, advocates and allies for each other. Read more.

9/16/19 - Salesforce, SFUSD partnership proves it takes a village

There’s a well-known African proverb that it takes a village to raise a child. Here in San Francisco, we’re fortunate that this is not just a saying, but a reality. One such example is our ongoing partnership with Salesforce. Read more.

9/9/19 - Family partnerships are essential to ensuring student success

We know that a child's family is their first and most influential teacher. Just imagine what a difference it can make for a child when everyone is working together to make sure they have what they need to learn and grow. Read more.

August 2019

8/26/19 - Stemming SFUSD’s teacher shortage

I wholeheartedly loved working as a teacher at George Washington Carver Elementary School in Hunters Point. Spending my days with curious young people and helping them learn about themselves and the world is a joy like no other. Read more.

8/20/19 - SFUSD begins school year with new changes

We’re back. Did you miss the sound of children playing on the school yard or the vision of youth exploring the Presidio’s history? I did! Read more.

8/15/19 - Goodbye summer, hello school year

I have a very important announcement that will bring parents and children great joy: Our schools open next week! Read more.