On Tuesday evening at the rec center, the S.O.S. committee, a community-led task force geared toward preventing future school closures, met to continue ongoing discussions regarding its purpose and vision.
As you may remember, the committee was originally chartered by San Bruno Park School District board member Jennifer Blanco during the April school closure meeting at Crestmoor.
Last week, the S.O.S. committe was formally dissolved from the district board, successfully transitioning from a board-sanctioned committee to a grassroots effort of community members who are passionate about the betterment of San Bruno's public schools.
During last night's meeting, the committee discussed it's mission statement and its vision for the future. At a well attended meeting with both new and returning attendees, the committee began its discussions by airing out its thoughts regarding the current state of affairs in the school district.
A variety of topics were discussed, ranging from the negativity from the community toward the district, the overall lack of trust between the community and the district leadership, as well as communication and budget issues.
During these discussions, it became clear that several reoccurring themes began to emerge.
Firstly, there is a clear lack of trust between the community and the district. Although this may be stating the obvious, the committee felt that finding ways to work and re-establish trust would be a key element in the committee's success moving forward.
Secondly, the need for a forward-facing approach. A definite amount of past "baggage" between the community and the district was identified. The committee would like to use a forward-facing approach—that is, to recognize we cannot change the past, and our efforts should be spent looking toward the future to make the school district a great place for our children.
Thirdly, the need to unite together. All committee members realized that the need for all schools to work together toward common goals would give it the best chance of success. This included enlisting every school to be recognized as part of the committee's efforts and uniting together to make our schools and community stronger.
Lastly, the need to continue our current momentum. The summer is quickly approaching, and the committee recognized that momentum leading into next year would be a critical success factor to its success.
In the end, the committee crafted and adopted a mission statement:
"Working together to bring San Bruno Park School District students the best education."
This committee, its goals and objectives and its vision for the future are all a work in progress. Much needs to be done. Future topics for discussion and action include:
- Restoring trust in the district
- The parcel tax
- Resolving budgetary issues
Thanks to community support, the community room at the Veteran's Memorial Building has been reserved on Tuesday nights for the S.O.S. committee during the summer. The next meeting is on Tuesday, May 29, from 6:30-8 p.m.
The success or the failure of this committee is truly in the hands of the community. The S.O.S. committee needs you, and all viewpoints are welcome. Come to the meeting and be part of saving San Bruno schools.