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News & Announcements

January, 2019

Greetings SSFUSD Community! 
Happy New Year! I hope you all enjoyed an amazing and relaxing holiday season  with your loved ones!  
January has brought a renewed sense of gratitude and excitement for our colleagues throughout SSFUSD! A lot of fantastic events have happened since December that I am thrilled  to share with you!

Our new Board members have hit the ground running! At our first Board meeting of the year we had a rich discussion about SSFUSD employee housing and the Trustee election areas. Check out our website at and scroll down the page and you will see the proposed maps. The screenshot below will assist you with navigating  to this section of the webpage. 

We value our community members’ feedback and engagement and now you also have the information available (also on the website) needed to create your own maps!

Golden Bell Recognition

At our January Board meeting, our district was presented  with a $5,000.00 check and a beautiful trophy for earning the prestigious Golden Bell award! We  are extremely honored and are currently displaying the  framed award and the names of all who contributed to the district earning this award at the District Office! Take a look at the pictures below!

Student Support and  Academic Enrichment Grant

In October, 2018, members of our Educational Services Department applied for a competitive grant named the Student Support and  Academic Enrichment Grant (SSAE). Our district was notified that SSFUSD was awarded this grant in order to infuse Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) and Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM) opportunities for our teachers and students!

The purpose of this grant is to encourage and support eligible districts to increase capacity and provide all students with access to well-rounded educational opportunities; support safe and healthy students; and/or support the effective use of technology. SSFUSD will continue to focus on providing well-rounded opportunities for our students through the arts. What an accomplishment to earn such a wonderful award! Thanks and sincere gratitude goes to Dr. Leticia Bhatia, who spearheaded this effort with support from colleagues within the district and at the county level. I would also like to recognize  Mr. Irish for his leadership and support of this project. Congratulations SSFUSD....another amazing accomplishment you've earned!

Click here to read more about the grant! 

Opinion Piece in the Daily Journal

Recently, I had the privilege of writing for our local newspaper; it was such an honor to be asked to write an OpEd piece in the Daily Journal. The piece focused  on equity in SSFUSD and the need for our district to continue learning and reflecting  on the ways in which we can either positively or negatively impact our students by our words, actions, policies, or procedures. The focus on equity, equitable outcomes, and serving the needs of all students and especially those most in need, is a commitment of the Board of Trustees and Cabinet. We will continue to delve more deeply into this topic through continuous opportunities of unpacking of our  policies, programs, and practices.  Our goal is to rebuild and promote equitable practices that ensure access for all of our students.  We are definitely on team #believe!

Click here to read the article!

2018-2019 Vision, Goals, Priorities informational videos and actions

In South San Francisco Unified School District, we are always thinking about ways we can articulate our vision, goals and priorities to ensure everyone knows what we are doing and why?

We thought we would try by creating short informational videos whereby we explain and graphically showcase where we are headed as a District. If you haven’t seen them yet, please take a moment and watch the videos and leave us your insights and feedback. Right now, the videos are primarily geared toward our internal district community to further explain where we are heading, as a school district. However, for anyone who has access to the links, you’re also more than welcome to watch and enjoy the journey we are on! SSFUSD, your involvement and engagement is paramount to us moving SSFUSD forward and becoming a premier district!

The videos are below!

  1.     Video 1 (SSFUSD Vision, LCAP Goals, and District Priorities): (Approximately 4.5 minutes)                                                                                                                                                     
  2.     Video 2 (SSFUSD Board & Superintendent  Vision and Institutional Commitments): (Approximately 3 minutes)                                                                                                  
  3.     Video 3 (Creating an equity focused District: Journey towards performance management): (Approximately 4 minutes)                                                                                             
  4.     Video 4 (SSFUSD Destination - Strengthening our Systems through Performance Management –Visual): (Approximately 4 minutes)

Also included is our District’s LCAP Plan. Click here to see the detailed actions/services that are included in our 3-year plan.

Kindergarten Night

We had a wonderfully attended and well-executed Kindergarten Night at the end of January. As you know, we cultivate inclusion in SSFUSD and we modeled just that. All 9 elementary schools had tables monitored by school staff and administration. Some sites had goodies, spirit wear, and pictures of the fun things happening at the site. Our African American Advisory Parents were there and our District English Learner Committee was well-represented! Other District Office staff were present as well to show our support and offer assistance anywhere needed. Our amazing parents and staff did a wonderful job taking care of our kiddos in the childcare room and of course, we were pleased to have our City colleagues from Parks and Recreation After School Program present as well! Our PTA Council was present and Mr. Sanna, PTA President, gave an inspiring and supportive speech to kick off the presentations! Overall, it was a successful evening. Our staff members were proud to showcase and share the many wonderful programs available  to families in our district. Our staff members were relaxed and happy as they provided excellent customer service to our new families. Our parents were inquisitive and curious about schools, programs, and after school care.   Our incoming students were happy, excited, and busily talking with and becoming friendly with potential new classmates! Kudos to Dr. Valerie Garrett and her support person Mr. Nathan Isla for coordinating, communicating, and successfully implementing our 2019 Kindergarten Night!

2019 Summer School Programs

Did you know that we already gotten our summer school program Board approved?

Summer school is quickly approaching and once again we will be offering a gold star of summer programs. Here are the summer programs we are offering.

Site Visits in January

I enjoyed my site visits this month to Ponderosa, Buri Buri and ALMS with Trustee Flores! At Alta Loma, teachers were engaging students in math problems on angles and solving for x,  and the ELA lesson was teaching students how to identify level I-III sentences based on the text! At Buri Buri, students were learning how to read word problems and understand how to calculate the time in between. In one class at Buri, students were developing their own business, which happened to be a bakery, and they needed to complete a table that showed the fraction of the items they needed to purchase and then  show its value in reduced simplest form and then the equivalent fraction. Students were discussing the possibilities in class and sharing their thoughts on ways to approach the problems! Check out the pictures below!


December, 2018

November, 2018

Did you know that SSFUSD recently celebrated by having a Ruby Bridges Walk to School Day? I was thrilled to get out and walk with our students and celebrate them and the passion they exemplified to stand up for courage and the integration of education. Click here to see the Facebook feed, click here to see the San Mateo County press release, and take a look at the pictures below!

Golden Bell Award

We had a validation visit and were recently notified that South San Francisco Unified has successfully earned a Golden Bell Award! Click here for the press release! 

California League of High/Middle Schools

I am proud to share that South San Francisco Unified has a number of teachers who have been nominated for Region 4’s Educator of the Year from the California League of High Schools/ Middle Schools! Here are the teachers who have been nominated and who will be honored at an awards dinner during the last week of November!

  • Helen Ng Tam, Parkway Heights Middle School
  • Corinna Low, Westborough Middle School
  • SeaAnna Patrick, El Camino High School
  • Rhonda Clements, South San Francisco High School

October, 2018

We have been very busy celebrating our schools and continuing to appreciate the opening of a new school year and the many things for which we are most proud.

Here are some pictures from Back to School Night this year! We had an amazing turnout and our site leaders shared information on our District goals, priorities, and our Vision for our students. We also emphasized our support and proactive efforts to ensure we have programs in place to support positive interactions with our students and positive and productive communication with our families!


Buri Buri School Dedication

It was a longer project than we initially anticipated but so thankful we were able to celebrate the Buri Buri dedication.



Cultural Celebrations

At our District English Learner Advisory Committee Meetings we celebrating the talent of our student Folklorico dancers and we celebrate Hispanic heritage/Latin/a/a Month! Enjoy the pictures!           


September, 2018

Did you know?

That SSFUSD has institutional commitments with which we strive to exemplify?

In South City, we have identified our C.A.R. to exemplify our institutional commitments to our community. In order to positively influence and impact our students, we recognize that our entire community must be involved and engaged. The C, recognizes our desire to communicate in ways that are transparent, professional, and honest. The A, is important to all in our District as we strive for excellence and equity in academics and our overall achievement for our students and staff. The R is one of the most critical as we are focused in SSFUSD on strengthening and maintaining positive and productive relationships throughout the district with one another, with our families, communities, and most importantly, with our students! See the picture of our CAR Graphic below which graphically depicts the SSFUSD institutional commitments!

Did you know that we have an invaluable partnership with the Genentech? South San Francisco Unified is a special place to be. We continuously strive to look for ways to engage our students and staff so they want to be here. If you haven’t had a chance to check out our video that highlights our partnership with Genentech, please click here and enjoy!

Did you know that SSFUSD  was featured on the news to showcase our amazing partnership with Genentech?  Click the link to the Destination Imagination video below!

Did you know that Genentech has a page dedicated to their company and SSFUSD! Click here to check it out and see the amazing ways they have been supporting to our school district!

Did you know that we have an Official District Twitter feed (@SSFUSD)  and that I have my own personal-professional Twitter feed (@ShawnterraT)? You can often find out some of the great things by viewing these periodically! 

August, 2018

Dear SSFUSD Community,

I remain humbled and privileged to serve as the Superintendent in SSFUSD! 

This is the beginning of my 4th year as the Superintendent in South San Francisco Unified and I am very proud of the things we have been able to accomplish as a school district.  In my tenure, we have been blessed to have received four Kent Awards , two Gold Ribbon Awards, and one  Title I Distinguished School Award

Please take the time to watch the State of the District video to get a glimpse of our District and where we are heading!