San Francisco School Board Recall Qualifies for Ballot

An effort to remove three San Francisco school board members has qualified for the ballot after organizers collected 80,000 signatures. The city's Department of Elections certified a Feb. 15 recall election on Monday. The targets are President Gabriela López, Vice President Faauuga Moliga, and Alison Collins.

The recall effort was driven primarily by pandemic school closures. The San Francisco School Board lagged far behind most other districts on its school reopening plans, prompting a lawsuit from the city attorney and criticism from Mayor London Breed. 

There are other issues at play as well. Alison Collins has been at the center of controversy over prior tweets about Asian-Americans. San Francisco Unified is in financial straits and is facing a possible takeover by the state. The board has been criticized for pursuing trivial agendas like the renaming of schools and it angered many when it moved to end merit-based admissions for the elite Lowell High School.

Election recall expert Joshua Spivak told Politico that he expects the recalls to succeed. School recall attempts rarely qualify for the ballot but when they do, he said they have a 75% to 80% chance of passing.

Clearly, California’s recall fever hasn’t broken yet.