Originally posted on Jan. 9, 2023.
Dear SFUSD Community,
We are continuing to monitor weather conditions in close coordination with the City and County of San Francisco. SFUSD staff have been working around the clock to manage the impacts of the recent weather events on schools, and it’s because of their hard work that schools were able to safely operate during inclement weather.
You may be aware that Mayor London Breed has issued a Local Proclamation of Emergency for the City and County of San Francisco. This proclamation is not in response to any upcoming weather events, nor does it serve as an indicator of whether schools are safe. San Francisco’s proclamation of local emergency is a step the City must take in order to recover costs associated with storm damage preparation, response, and recovery from the state and federal government. It also allows San Francisco to activate city employees as Disaster Services Workers and streamline contracting procedures for the procurement of goods and services related to storm impacts, such as sandbags and removal of downed trees from public rights of way.
As the Superintendent, it is my job to make a determination when and if conditions warrant the cancellation of school. I have been collaborating with District leaders, school site administration, and city agencies to make the decision for schools to stay open so that we fulfill our responsibility to SFUSD students and families, especially those furthest from access.
SFUSD will notify families and staff in the event of school closures, and will continue to provide timely updates and information. We urge families to update their contact information on ParentVUE so that we may be in touch with them in case of an emergency.
We take the safety of our students very seriously, and will continue to monitor the impact of inclement weather on our school facilities and operations. Here is our progress to-date:
- Triaged 92 storm-related inquiries with reported issues at school sites such as clean-up, fallen trees, leaks, flooding, and others.
- Responded to 100% of reported incidents related to initial clean up and assessment of leaks, standing water, and/or flooding, and has completed 80% of initial clean-up requests at school sites.
- Worked with our transportation vendors to prevent any interruption to student transportation services.
- Procured more sandbags in reserve in advance of anticipated weather events.
- Early upgrades of electrical and refrigeration systems enabled meals to be delivered a day ahead to provide reliable meals for students and staff at school sites.
SFUSD will continue to engage in repair work that is necessary to prevent future incidents as the weather permits. We are committed to mobilizing and responding to weather-related emergencies to mitigate the impact of the storm on school sites.
Visit sf72.org for storm recovery and safety tips from the City and County of San Francisco.
I want to thank SFUSD staff, who have been working tirelessly to ensure that our schools remain safe places where students can learn, get a nutritious meal, and be in the care of a trusted adult. Specifically, I want to commend SFUSD staff at the frontlines– including our custodians, school nutrition workers, building and grounds staff, educators, and so many more. I am grateful for our community who are showing up in this critical moment, and for bringing our values of student-centered and unity to life.
Please take good care of yourselves and those around you. I look forward to sharing additional updates with you as they become available.
Dr. Matt Wayne