SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Members of the San Francisco Board of Education on Thursday approved a “no confidence” vote to remove Vice President Alison Collins from her leadership position over racist tweets she posted five years ago.
Collins has been under fire in recent weeks for the 2016 social media comments. The firestorm over Collins is just the latest involving the embattled leadership of San Francisco schools.
On Thursday evening Laura Dudnick with the San Francisco Unified School District confirmed that the SF Board of Education on Thursday passed the resolution “Assertion of No-Confidence,” removing Commissioner Collins from her leadership position as Vice President and from all committees of the San Francisco Board of Education “for the duration of her term and effective immediately.”
Dudnick told KPIX the resolution was co-authored by Commissioners Jenny Lam and Faauuga Moliga, and was passed by the SF Board of Education in a vote of 5 to 2.
Last weekend, Mayor London Breed was among a group of elected officials who demanded the resignation of Collins due to several “racist, anti-Asian” Twitter posts.
In a statement released Saturday, nearly two dozen officials including Breed, State Assembly members David Chiu and Phil Ting and San Francisco Supervisors Connie Chan and Gordon Mar joined the growing chorus in calling for Collins resignation.
“We are outraged and sickened by the racist, anti-Asian statements tweeted by School Board Vice President Alison Collins that recently came to light,” the statement read. “No matter the time, no matter the place, and no matter how long ago the tweets were written, there is no place for an elected leader in San Francisco who is creating and/or created hate statements and speeches.”
Collins wrote the tweets, in her words, to combat anti-Black racism in the Asian community.
She wrote “many Asian Americans believe they benefit from the ‘model minority’ BS. Many Asian American (teachers, students, and parents) actively promote these myths. They use White supremacist thinking to assimilate and ‘get ahead.'”
“Talk to many (Lowell High School) parents and you will hear praise of Tiger Moms and disparagement of Black/Brown culture.”
She continued, “where are the vocal Asians speaking up against Trump? Don’t Asian Americans know they are on his list as well? Do they think they won’t be deported? Profiled? Beaten?”
As of Saturday evening, Collins had not deleted the posts. She issued a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle saying the tweets have been taken out of context.
“A number of tweets and social media posts I made in 2016 have recently been highlighted,” she said in the statement. “They have been taken out of context, both of that specific moment and the nuance of the conversation that took place. I acknowledge that right now, in this moment my words taken out of context can be causing more pain for those who are already suffering. For the pain my words may have caused I am sorry, and I apologize unreservedly.”
The firestorm over Collins 2016 social media comments is just the latest involving the embattled leadership of San Francisco schools.
Last month, the city sued the SF Board of Education and SFUSD, seeking a court order to speed up the reopening public schools that have been shut down for more than a year during the COVID-19 pandemic. On Thursday, a San Francisco superior court judge denied City Attorney Dennis Herrera’s request for a preliminary injunction that would force the San Francisco Unified officials to reopen school by the end of April.
Earlier this month, San Francisco Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Vincent Matthews announced he was stepping down from his post at the end of June amid the ongoing and contentious reopening battle.
The announcement came just days after the district reached a deal with teachers’ union to reopen schools for K-5 students in April. Middle and high school reopenings have not yet been determined