San Francisco Public Schools ‘Get Adopted’ By Bay Area Tech Companies

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A unique, first-of-its-kind program was launched in San Francisco on Thursday, connecting tech companies with local public schools across the city.

The Circle the Schools initiative uses an adopt-a-school model to connect San Francisco-based companies with schools. Over the course of the school year, each partner company works with principals and teachers to organize volunteer activities tailored to meet each school’s individual needs. The goal is to eventually partner a tech company with each of San Francisco’s more than 100 public schools.

Leaders from the tech community joined with San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Richard Carranza at Junipero Serra Elementary School on Thursday to launch the initiative.

“We are going to go on field trips, we are going to bring more books to the school, we are going to do recess monitoring, we’re going to do safe drop off services,” said Xoom CEO and President John Kunze, who has already partnered with Junipero Serra. “We are going to bring our engineers here to help these kids learn how to code.”

Superintendent Carranza said he believes the program could be a national model.

“It is undeniable that you cannot have a world class city without a world class public school system,” he said. “So your investment in schools is an investment in San Francisco.”

Among the other tech companies participating: Tagged, Eventbrite, Zynga, Salesforce, Dropbox and Splunk. All are part of the San Francisco Citizens Initiative for Technology and Innovation, or sf.citi, which launched in 2012. It is an organization committed to leveraging the power of the tech community around civic action in San Francisco.

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