December 3, 2021

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San Francisco School Board Members Targeted In California’s Latest Recall Attempt

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Three San Francisco school board members are facing a recall election, as parents angered by coronavirus-related delays in reopening schools gathered enough signatures to trigger a vote.

The special election, which the city’s Department of Elections certified Monday, is set to take place on Feb. 15 and will allow voters to decide whether to recall President Gabriela López, Vice President Faauuga Moliga and Commissioner Alison Collins of the SF Unified School District board.

As many other large school districts returned to in-person classes when COVID-19 cases fell in the spring, San Francisco public schools continued with remote instruction.

Parents and other supporters gathered about 80,000 signatures to recall each of the three board members, which was well above the 50,000 signatures needed.

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SF Unified School District board members Alison Collins, Gabriela López and Faauuga Moliga (from left) are targets of the latest recall effort in California.

COVID-related closures weren’t the only problems some parents had with the school board.

Some people also weren’t pleased with its vote to end merit-based admissions at the elite Lowell High School earlier this year. Instead, the school board moved admissions to a lottery system in an effort to combat racial inequities.

The board also faced criticism locally and nationwide for a decision — which was ultimately reversed — to rename dozens of schools named after historical figures. At times, board members cited controversial evidence linking those figures to racism or other oppression.

And Collins was stripped of her vice president title earlier this year, after some of her 2016 tweets surfaced that were racist against Asians.

The local recall effort was made official just weeks after a recall vote targeting California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) failed.

Moliga criticized the recall attempt in a statement to HuffPost. He said the effort to remove him was “motivated by politics, not education policy,” and that the election process would “bring those motives to light.”

López and Collins did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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