United for our children’s future 

click to enlarge Colleges, businesses and other community partners are teaming up with the San Francisco Unified School District for UniteSF, which will help give kids the skills their need in college or vocational programs. - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy photo
  • Colleges, businesses and other community partners are teaming up with the San Francisco Unified School District for UniteSF, which will help give kids the skills their need in college or vocational programs.
Not long ago, one of our high school seniors, Diego Morales, told me: “The future belongs to those who claim and name it.” I totally agree with his bold and positive outlook.

Not only do I agree with him, but the San Francisco Unified School District has more than 20 big-time partners who also feel that way, and have promised to help every one of our students be able to name and claim their own bright futures.

Swimming in the right direction

Just last week Mayor Ed Lee, the Chamber of Commerce and more than 20 local colleges, businesses and community partners have signed on to UniteSF, a collective and ambitious commitment to work together so that every student in San Francisco will graduate high school prepared for college or a skilled vocational program and have a pathway to a sustainable job and career.

I am thrilled that our children have even more champions along this journey. UniteSF will help us all swim in the same direction.

Getting a head-start on that promise

We’ve already started. We’ve convened district leaders, community organizations and tech industry executives to build on the achievements of our black students. In the next few weeks you will begin to hear about unique projects in line with President Barack Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative.

Our STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Talent Pathway will focus on how the business community can make even bigger commitments to recruit and hire SFUSD graduates in STEM fields after they complete college or vocational programs.

These two projects are just a few that show how our community can support students, from preschool age through college completion, and in turn cultivate a talent pipeline for our city’s growing high-wage STEM jobs. And along the way, they will help kids persist through school, diversify and localize San Francisco talent.

With UniteSF we have an opportunity for a true collective impact. UniteSF is one important way we can ensure that every child who grows up in San Francisco graduates, thrives in our local colleges and contributes to the character and soul of San Francisco.
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