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African-American students in San Francisco consistently rank at the lowest levels of performance in test scores, graduation rates, and qualifications to attend a University of California campus. 47% of African-American youth reside in lower income neighborhoods. African-American students experience a graduation rate of 55.9% – the lowest in SFUSD – and a dropout rate of 18.8%. Despite being just over 10% of the student population, African-Americans account for 50% of suspensions and 62% of expulsions.

We therefore petition the elected leadership of San Francisco to take the following actions to address these health disparities:


  • Establish an Educational Disparities Task Force that reports directly to the Mayor, charged with working collaboratively with students, families, educators, and community members to develop an evidence-based plan in six months to close the achievement gap for African-American students in San Francisco.

  • Provide a substantial and long-term budget for the Educational Disparities Task Force so that San Francisco has a specific group which can cooperate with national and state initiatives (such as the Brother’s Keeper program supported by President Obama) which are aimed at long-term solutions to reduce educational disparities experienced by African-American students.

  • Create a regular report that monitors out-of-classroom time resulting from suspensions, expulsions, and truancy for all San Francisco students, and isolates and reduces any disparities found by race or other classification.

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