Spartacus the robot was officially retired from the competition circuit, but Lisa Vlaovich and Catya Padilla couldn’t bring themselves to let repairs slide. As they tightened screws and adjusted gears on the 2-foot-tall mobile robot, Vlaovich considered how far she had come over the past year.
“I actually never thought I’d be able to build a robot,” she said. “I thought it would be really difficult, like, only smart people can build robots. I guess this makes me smart!” Read More
City College of San Francisco could net $1.1 million in unclaimed credits if former students don’t step forward by June 25 to claim their money.
While cash-strapped community college officials would be happy to keep the money to help plug their own budget gap, they are required by law to seek out the nearly 16,000 former students who never collected reimbursements for dropped classes and other cash left in their school accounts. Read More
When National Guardsman Nelson Gonzalez was deployed to Iraq four years ago, it was hard on his four daughters.
Their dad missed birthdays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, and although he called whenever he could, the girls were afraid he might never come home.
“They got used to him calling often, and when he didn’t, they would worry,” said Nelson’s wife, Jennifer Gonzalez. “Generally, deployment is hard on kids” Read More
As schools across California continue to wrangle with state budget cuts, voters in three San Mateo County school districts will have their say in June about funding measures.
The Jefferson Union High School District in Daly City is proposing a $48 annual parcel tax that would run from July of this year until June 2016. The district calculates that it has lost $3.4 million in funding since 2008, and it stands to lose another $1.5 million. Measure Y would net $1.5 million for Jefferson Union’s five schools. Read More
City officials are hoping voters will approve a $195 million bond measure that would cover upgrades to parks, playgrounds and other recreation facilities that Recreation and Park Department General Manager Phil Ginsburg said are being “loved to death.”
A little more than half the funds would pay for upgrades to specific neighborhood facilities. The rest would cover long-deferred improvements to parks citywide — including Golden Gate, McLaren and Lake Merced — along with programs targeting playground safety, water conservation, forestry and trail maintenance. Read More
Joel Talkoff is an experienced driver, but sending a text message from behind the wheel proved too much for the 17-year-old Gateway High School senior Tuesday.
“It was challenging,” he said. “I was able to get the message out, but then I hit the biker.”
Freshman William Pitts, 15, also ran into trouble.
“A dog jumped out at me and I killed it,” he said. “I was focusing on texting, and it was kind of hard at the same time.”
“I crashed two seconds out,” confessed sophomore Cynthia Guzman, 16. Read More
People with HIV are four times more likely to suffer sudden cardiac death than the general population, according to a new study by researchers at UC San Francisco.
The 10-year study, published Monday in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, looked at nearly 3,000 HIV patients at San Francisco General Hospital between 2000 and 2009. Among the 230 who died, AIDS was the most common cause, accounting for more than half the deaths. But 13 percent suffered sudden cardiac death, when the heart stops beating unexpectedly. Read More
Angered by budget cuts proposed by the San Francisco Unified School District, the teachers union is one step closer to striking after 97 percent of the nearly 2,000 teachers who showed up to a general membership meeting Thursday cast ballots in favor of calling a vote to strike.
“We’ve never had a strike vote with that many people voting and that high a percentage,” said Matthew Hardy, a spokesman for the union. Turnout was about 32 percent of the union’s membership. Read More
It isn’t often that Cesar Chavez Elementary in the Mission has out-of-town visitors, but on a recent afternoon school staffer Carlo Solis led a dozen people from as far away as Washington, D.C., across the yard.
As children in the after-school program tossed a rubber ball around beneath a colorful mural of the school’s namesake, Solis offered tips on how to get busy parents to come to school events. Read More
Edward McCaughan The sociology department chair at San Francisco State University wrote “Art and Social Movements: Cultural Politics in Mexico and Aztlán,” about artists’ influence on Mexican and Chicano activism in the 1960s to ’80sHow did artists help drive social movements?
They created visual discourses that allowed people to imagine themselves differently — as empowered citizens or feminist women ... as people with rights who could stand up to their government. Read More
San Francisco State University will have a new president beginning in August, the college announced Thursday.
The California State University board of trustees selected Leslie Wong to take over for retiring President Robert Corrigan, who has led S.F. State since 1988. Wong has served for the past eight years as president of Northern Michigan University, in Marquette, Mich. Read More
San Francisco’s school board voted Tuesday to lay off 218 faculty and staff, including 65 at the Superintendent’s Zones in the Mission and Bayview whom the district had hoped to spare by casting aside seniority. Read More
A well-regarded nationwide chain of charter schools is seeking to open a high school in San Francisco in 2013.
Knowledge Is Power Program, which is better known as KIPP and has operated two middle schools in The City for nearly a decade, has petitioned the San Francisco Unified School District for a charter to open a high school. The chain includes 61 middle, 30 elementary and 18 high schools in urban areas nationwide. Read More
A hundred years ago, children dressed up for class picture day. The boys, wearing jackets and ties, and the girls, in demure dresses with giant bows perched on their heads, lined up before the front door of Spring Valley Elementary School and stood still for the camera.
The pictures, part of a collection donated by alumni, date back as far as the 1910s, shortly after the school moved into its current, post-1906 earthquake home on Jackson Street near Hyde Street. But back then, the school had already been open for six decades. Read More
As negotiations over an employment contract appear to have stalled, the San Francisco Unified School District’s teachers union will meet next week for the first of two votes that could authorize leaders to call for a strike.
In an email to members, United Educators of San Francisco said the district was demanding too many spending cuts, despite what union leaders said were millions of dollars in resources the district could use to prevent layoffs and give teachers a 2 percent raise. Teachers last received a raise, of 1.5 percent, in 2008. Read More