SFUSD Insider - May 2022
Dear SFUSD Colleagues:

This week of May 1 through May 8 is National Teacher Appreciation Week, and I am honored to celebrate the teachers we have in San Francisco public schools –– not only during Teacher Appreciation Week –– but all year long. In addition, May 1 was National School Principals Day and I want to extend a special thank you to each and every principal and assistant principal in SFUSD for all that you do to create and sustain supportive learning environments.


Ours is a profession like none other. It takes great patience, excellent interpersonal skills, deep content knowledge and a lot of energy. 


As I reflect on my time at SFUSD –– as a student, teacher, principal, and superintendent –– it is the strength and commitment to service from staff across the organization, and our shared mission, that has inspired me all of these years.

To all SFUSD educators I want to say: thank you for your commitment to our students every day and especially in the hardest of times. Thank you for bringing your professional and personal best to ensure each and every student receives the quality instruction and equitable support required to thrive in the 21st century.

In Community,

Dr. Matthews

Featured in this month's SFUSD Insider:
SNS staff and Dr. Matthews strike a pose in the yard at Bryant ES
Thank Your School Lunch Hero!

Join us on School Lunch Hero Day today, May 6, in saying thank you to all our Student Nutrition Dining Staff at elementary, middle, and high schools; the staff serving meals to early education students; and our food delivery drivers! They have worked so hard to keep students nourished in school and ready to learn, showing up every day in service of helping students thrive inside and outside the classroom.

A school nurse speaks with a father and female student in her office.
Celebrating SFUSD School Nurses

Wednesday, May 11, is National School Nurse Day, and we are excited to celebrate and thank our school nurses for all that they do. These past two years we’ve faced a health emergency like never before and school district nurses have stepped up to support SFUSD students during this challenging time. Thank you to all of our school nurses on this special day -- and every day of the year!

Sunset ES
Two SFUSD Schools Win 2022 California Pivotal Practice Award
Congratulations to Mission Education Center and Sunset ES for being among the 727 schools and 121 school districts named as a winner of the 2022 California Pivotal Practice (CAPP) Award Program! The award celebrates schools and districts that implemented an innovative practice during the 2020–21 school year, when California required schools to offer distance learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Kimberly Wong
Kimberly Wong, Teacher at Glen Park ES, Wins RAVE
Kimberly Wong, a teacher at Glen Park ES, was nominated for her student-centered approach to education.
According to her nomination, not only has Ms. Wong "made students feel safe, but she has also made them excited to go to school every day and learn. The love of learning that Ms. Wong teaches the kids is something they carry throughout their lives."
Read about colleagues who have been nominated and those who have won a RAVE award. You can nominate any district employee or team for recognition (except for yourself or an entire school).
Expressing Gratitute

SFUSD is grateful to all of our employees for the incredible service to students, families, and schools. Human Resources is responsible for recruiting, hiring, supporting, developing, and retaining a racially and otherwise diverse workforce prepared to provide each and every student the quality instruction and equitable support necessary to thrive in the 21st century. Part of supporting and retaining our employees is frequently and abundantly expressing gratitude. You likely could work in a number of other districts or enterprises, but you choose to serve the young people of our city and our vision for equity and social justice. 

EMPowerSF Known Issues and Updates

Staff are working diligently to make sure you have the appropriate information regarding your pay. A new EMPowerSF Known Issues and Updates section has been created on the EMPowerSF website to inform employees about issues we are working to correct. 


We are also working to provide more one-on-one in-person and virtual support for employees to get questions answered regarding your pay and HR matters, and any issues you may have that are related to our transition to EMPowerSF. We will send out additional communications regarding these opportunities in the near future.


We deeply apologize for all the changes and the many unforeseen challenges we are navigating during the EMPowerSF transition. These challenges have created unacceptable obstacles for you during an already difficult time. Every effort is being made to resolve these issues as quickly as possible. We are very sorry for the hardship this has caused.

Certificated Voluntary Transfer Week

During the week of Monday, May 9 - Friday, May 13, 2022, certificated teachers can apply and pursue other certificated opportunities within SFUSD without having to be “released” by their administrators. Here is the voluntary transfer guide.


Being a high school math teacher, for me, means having a conviction that every student has the capacity to think like a mathematician, and that we all have the capacity to individually and collectively reach our fullest potential.”


- Luis Vidalon-Suzuki, Math Teacher, John O’Connell HS

Luis Vidalon-Suzuki
Three high school graduates

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month


May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. The celebration theme this year is Forging Community Bonds. Learn about events and activities in San Francisco.


May 2022

Three high school graduates

2022 HS Graduation Ceremonies


SFUSD high school graduation ceremonies will take place outdoors at Kezar Stadium or McAteer Stadium. All graduation ceremonies are ticketed events and tickets may be received from your home school. In addition, all graduation ceremonies will be live-streamed. Please check www.sfusd.edu on the date of the graduation ceremony for direct links.


May 31 - June 2

SFUSD Para to Teacher Program Accepting Applications


The Para to Teacher Program is a district-led teacher pipeline program open to any and all SFUSD staff who want to become certifiated teachers, not just paraeducators. That includes: school site secretaries, bus drivers, coaches, and afterschool staff employed at least part time with SFUSD.


Learn More

How Should SFUSD Improve Schoolyards?


Share your feedback on how SFUSD should spend $14 million in 2016 bond funds to improve SFUSD schoolyards. All feedback is due by May 10.


Learn More

At SF elementary school, LGBTQ Pride is on the march
George Peabody ES hosted its first ever LGBTQ Pride Parade on April 29, where "the entire student body proceeded to march around the city block of its Inner Richmond neighborhood," as reported in the Bay Area Reporter.
Can College-Ready Graduation Requirements Close the Opportunity Gap?
SFUSD researchers and leaders in implementing San Francisco's A–G policy reflect on gains in high school graduation rates and challenges and offer lessons for other districts in implementing these kinds of policies.
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