San Francisco Mayor Admits ‘We Failed Our Children’ After School Board Recall
San Francisco Mayor London Breed listens at a press conference regarding the next steps she will be taking to replace three school board members who were successfully recalled at City Hall on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022 in San Francisco, California.
Gabrielle Lurie/The San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images

San Francisco Mayor London Breed said that the San Francisco Board of Education “failed our children” after three members of the board were ousted by massive margins in a recall election this week.

Speaking with Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet The Press” Sunday, Breed conceded that the recall effort was about parents’ frustration with the school board for prioritizing progressive concerns over the need to put students back into the classroom.

“So, there’s all these array of takes,” said Todd after reading off several headlines from newspapers across the country reacting to the recall vote, “what’s yours?”

“Well, my take is, it was really about the frustration of the Board of Education doing their fundamental job, and that is to make sure that our children are getting educated, that they get back into the classroom, and that did not occur,” Breed responded. “They were focusing on other things that were clearly a distraction. Not to say that those other things around renaming schools and conversations around changes to our school district weren’t important, but what was most important was the fact that our kids were not in the classroom.”

Breed touted San Francisco’s record on handling COVID-19, saying that the city’s Department of Public Health had been a “leader” during the pandemic, that in some cases the city had put in place some of the “most conservative policies to ensure the safety of all San Franciscans,” and that the city’s COVID-19 statistics show that it is a “clear leader.” Breed did admit, however, that “we failed our children, parents were upset, the city as a whole was upset, and the decision to recall school board members was a result of that.”

Asked what she was looking for in replacements for the ousted members, Breed said she is looking for people “that are going to focus on the priorities of the school district, and not on politics, and not on what it means to run for office, and ‘stepping stones’ … we need people who want to be on the school board to make a difference.”

Breed also took issue with comments made by ousted board commissioner Gabriela Lopez, who tweeted Thursday that “white supremacists” were aligned with the recall. “[I]t’s not the right kind of reaction,” said Breed, “and the fact that we’re still even listening to any of the recalled school board members is definitely a problem. … This person is making it about [her] when it really should be about our kids, who have suffered, not just in San Francisco, but all over this country as a result of this pandemic.”

“At the end of the day, our kids were not in school, and they should have been,” Breed said.

You can watch the full interview here.

The three school board members were recalled Wednesday amid concerns that they had prioritized progressive politics over reopening the city’s schools, as The Daily Wire reported. San Francisco Board of Education President Gabriela López, Vice President Faauuga Moliga, and Commissioner Alison Collins were recalled by at least 70% of voters, in what one organizer called a “revolt” against the board members’ agenda.

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