San Francisco mayor says city failed kids, should have focused on returning to schools

San Francisco Mayor London Breed said Sunday that her city failed its kids by not prioritizing returning children to classrooms as the COVID-19 pandemic changed.

The Democratic mayor told NBC that voters’ decision to recall three members of the city’s school board last week reflected a justifiable frustration that the board of education was focused on distractions such as renaming schools that were not as important as returning to the classroom.

“We failed our children,” Ms. Breed said on “Meet the Press.” “Parents were upset. The city as a whole was upset, and the decision to recall school board members was a result of that.”

Ms. Breed said the conversation surrounding renaming schools was important and she lauded public health officials, but she said school board officials need to deal with challenges such as learning loss and mental health problems exacerbated by COVID and pandemic-related restrictions.

Ms. Breed’s office has said she has already begun the vetting process for finding replacement appointees.

Voters motivated over public education policy ranging from COVID-related restrictions to politics affecting teachers’ instruction on issues involving history and race have been on display elsewhere. 

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin won his race last year against former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe by making education a focus of his campaign.

After last week’s school board member recalls, SFGate.com said it obtained Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee material showing Republicans’ criticisms of Democrats’ handling of COVID were resonating with voters and that a majority of respondents to internal polling thought Democrats in Congress had gone too far in their pandemic response.

For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.

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