Faced with criticism, San Francisco school board now will delay renaming 44 schools

Faced with mounting criticism, the San Francisco Board of Education has now decided to put the plan to rename 44 buildings in San Francisco Unified School District on hold. 

On Sunday, board president Gabriela Lopez announced she was now more focused on getting  students back into the classroom.

"I'm committed to making sure every student and family at SFUSD is supported through this process," she tweeted. "I also acknowledge and take responsibility for mistakes made in the building renaming process. We need to slow down and provide more opportunities for community input -- that cannot happen until AFTER our schools are back in person."

Lopez also announced on Twitter this would be the last time she will comment on renaming until schools are reopened.

The board has taken national heat about their commitment to renaming schools, including one named after Abraham Lincoln in the name of eradicating racism, and ignoring the fact that children haven't been in school for nearly a year. 

"I know families are hurting," she wrote. "I hear it from each and every parent I've spoken to. We're in negotiations to get the work on returning to in-person learning done and I'm committed to working with city partners to get vaccinations, testing and other resources we need."

Matt Haney, San Francisco supervisor for District 6, responded to the news on Twitter, saying, "Absolutely the right thing to do. The focus has to be on reopening. Everything else should be paused and be done in close consultation with school communities."

Seeyew Mo, executive director of Families for San Francisco, responded in a statement by saying that the board must now repeal the Jan. 27 renaming resolution and that next time, when school names are up for debate, the entire community should be involved. 

Bay City News contributed to this report.