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A San Francisco school board member who was recalled from office in a landslide vote in February intends to run again for the position, one of nine candidates who have notified election officials of their intent to run for one of three seats in the November election.
Gabriela López submitted her candidacy papers Thursday, according to the San Francisco Department of Elections, a day before the filing deadline.
López was one of three school board members removed from the board in the recall. She was serving as board president at the time.
The recall divided the city, with a grassroots effort of frustrated parents and community members pushing for the trustees' removal over the slow reopening of schools during the pandemic and the board's focus on controversial issues like renaming 44 school sites and ending the merit-based admission system at Lowell High School.
Mayor London Breed appointed three people to fill the vacant seats — Lainie Motamedi, Lisa Weissman-Ward and Ann Hsu. All three are running to retain their seats in November.
Lopez declared her candidacy amid a new controversy on the school board prompted by racist remarks made by Hsu about Black and brown students and families.
The teachers union, the local NAACP, several city supervisors and other organizations have called for Hsu to step down, leaving a possible opening for other candidates to gain advantage over the appointed incumbent. In recent days, others have added their names to the candidate list.
Hsu wrote in response to a candidate questionnaire from SF Parent Action, that "unstable family environments" and "lack of parental encouragement to focus on learning" were among the biggest challenges in educating Black and brown students.
She later amended the remarks and has apologized several times. The school board voted unanimously last week to admonish her for the remarks. Hsu also voted for her own admonishment.
An influential parent group, SF Parent Action, endorsed Motamedi and Weissman-Ward Thursday, but left Hsu off their list.
"Parents sought out candidates who have a proven track record of putting students first, who understand what good governance looks like, who will manage district finances sensibly to make the district solvent again and maintain local control of our schools, and who are willing to work collaboratively with their peers, the superintendent, staff, families, teachers, and the community," said Yvette Edwards, co-founder and board member of the group, in a statement. "Parents also sought out candidates who believe in and will work towards making our public schools both more equitable and excellent so that every student has what they need to thrive and meet their full potential."
Also running are Laurance Lee, Josephy Kelly, Jr., Karen Fleshman, Deldelp Medina and Alida Fisher.
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