Letter To the Editor

Dear CCSF students and community, 

 

Four of seven seats on CCSF’s Board of Trustees are up for election. Trustees are elected to approve the school’s budget, which affects which teachers can teach and what classes are offered. CCSF is at risk of losing accreditation again, and we believe that Anita Martinez is the best candidate for Board Trustee to prevent that.

 

The upcoming US election threatens our community values — racial justice, food security, LGBTQ rights, and immigrant rights. We cannot afford to gamble with the future of our public education. CCSF trustees have a direct impact on students’ lives. Ask the African American Studies Department students who still do not have their elected chair in a full-time position, Fort Mason students who lost their entire campus, Southeast Campus students who did not have any classes, immigrant non-credit ESL students who experienced daunting registration issues and who suffered from deep cuts to their department. Ask all students who are waiting for the College to post an official statement from CCSF in support of Black Lives Matter.

 

CCSF students hosted an online Candidate Forum on September 23. This was the first and only event where candidates had an opportunity to address student questions directly and debate. It was planned in collaboration with student organizers from many backgrounds: Black Student Union, Disabled Students Program and Services, Interdisciplinary Studies Department, CCSF Facilities Committee student representative, CCSF Phillipine US Solidarity Organization (PUSO), CCSF4All, John Adams Associated Students Council, CCSF Collective, African American Studies Department Ambassador and Vick Chung (CCSF Student Trustee).

 

View the video here: https://tinyurl.com/viewccsfforum

 

CCSF’s future depends on every vote cast in the next week. We need your help to elect candidates that will show up for students and teachers, so it’s important to tell you who actually showed up:

 

Thank you to the candidates who gave us their time and ideas for CCSF:

  • Anita Martinez
  • Geramye Teeter
  • Aliyah Chisti
  • Jeanette Quick
  • Victor Olivieri

 

These candidates apologized, but could not attend due to prior commitments:

  • Shanell Williams (incumbent)

 

Shame on these candidates — who did not respond or show up:

  • Tom Temprano (incumbent)
  • Han Zou
  • Alan Wong 

 

CCSF Collective endorses Anita Martinez because of her CCSF background: she was an ESL teacher and faculty member, a union organizer and president, and has financial leadership experience at two other Bay Area community colleges. Anita is for a Green, more diverse CCSF with strong student services. You can learn more about her campaign by visiting AnitaMartinezForCollegeBoard.com. 

 

Anita is also endorsed by Student Trustee Vick Chung, Student Chancellor Angelica Campos, CCSF 4 All, John Adams Associated Student Council, Interdisciplinary Studies Department, AFT 2121 (our teachers union), CCSF alums Jimmie Fails & Joe Talbot (The Last Black Man in San Francisco), SF District Attorney Chesa Boudin, CA State Senate candidate Jackie Fielder and more.

 

We are disappointed and do not support the incumbents (Shanell Williams and Tom Temprano) because of their harmful voting record:

 

  • Gave disgraced Chancellor Mark Rocha $340,000 settlement money for leaving the College in disarray. 
  • They voted to close the Fort Mason campus. 
  • They allowed the gutting of the Older Adult program at CCSF. 
  • They stood by while the non- credit ESL program suffered egregious cuts. 
  • They hired expensive consultants and neglected financial governance/transparency by not hiring a budget analyst/Chief Financial Officer for the entire 2019-2020 school year.

 

The current board and candidates seeking re-election must be held accountable for their performance and decisions. We want commitments to ongoing advocacy efforts. The board must address the failing administration and demands of the Black Student Union and Affirmative Action Task Force.

 

Trustees must be present, respond, and act.

 

We are tired of aspiring politicians using CCSF as a stepping stone further into SF government. We want trustees who will show up for us. Now and in the future.

 

Anita Martinez can do this because she’s coming out of retirement to serve students, teachers, and the education system. Her motives are pure and she is the only candidate qualified by a lifetime of educating. Please vote for Anita Martinez for City College Board.

 

In solidarity,

 

Jess Nguyen and Eira Kien

CCSF Collective

https://www.ccsfcollective.org

 

CCSF Collective is the only student-led art activism organization on campus. We’ve been working for students since Summer 2019 when we fought to keep Ethnic Studies & Social Justice courses alongside the Ethnic Studies and Social Justice Collaborative. We advocated for student power against the Chancellor Rocha administration, raised concerns over the lack of fiscal responsibility from our current Trustees because they forwent hiring a budget analyst/financial controller over 2019-2020, lobbied the Emergency Bridge Fund at City Hall, petitioned to keep Fort Mason Campus, and supported Black Student Union and our teacher union’s Affirmative Action Task Force’s demands. Now, we are fighting to ensure the right trustees are elected in 2021.

 

Editor’s Note : 

 

The political views and opinions of CCSF Collective do not pertain to that of The Guardsman. The newspaper remains independent from their statements, but encourages freedom of speech.