Students return to the classroom / SF residents boxed out from Moscone Center

It's Monday, April 12th.

Hey there, San Francisco. 

After more than a year, students at three-dozen public elementary and preschools in San Francisco returned to the classroom on Monday. 

“This morning, it really felt like a new vibe,” Dr. D’Andrea Robinson, principal at Zaida T. Rodriguez Early Education School, told Mission Local. “It feels good.” 

Still, the return is limited for now. Some schools will be back to in-person learning five days a week, while others will only be back for two days. Third through fifth graders won’t start coming back until next Monday, and the vast majority of middle and high school students won’t return this year at all. 

Meredith Willa Dodson, the co-founder of Decreasing the Distance, a group that has promoted the reopening of schools in San Francisco, told the Chronicle that the district’s decision to bring back students in waves, “feels a little bit like a reopening plan for like August of 2020, not April of 2021.”

“That’s really frustrating,” she said. 

Perhaps the strangest scenario in this whole thing: Some students may take a seat at their desks on Monday only to find that their teacher is on a screen, instructing from home. In those situations, a substitute teacher will be on-site to supervise the classroom. 

Of course, there are some positives here and by the end of April, 22,000 of SFUSD’s 52,000 students are expected to be back in the classroom. 

“There's still a lot of work that needs to be done to get all of our students back to full-time, in-person instruction,” Mayor Breed tweeted on Monday from Bret Harte Elementary. “But this is a good step forward.” 

And with that, onto some news… 

Starting on Thursday, all Californians over the age of 16 will be eligible to receive the Covid vaccine, but in the Bay Area, some inconsistencies have emerged. 

Namely, residents between the ages of 16 and 49 living in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties can now book vaccine appointments at the Moscone Center, while most San Francisco residents in that age group still cannot. 

“SF's public health department still inexplicably excluding our own residents from access,” Supervisor Matt Haney tweeted on Monday. “It serves no purpose whatsoever with respect to equity or anything else.” 

The city’s Department of Emergency Management did not immediately respond to my requests for more information on the matter. Meanwhile, Supervisor Haney said he has “texted or called all the relevant officials within the department,” but that there has been “no urgency that I've seen or heard from SFDPH to get this fixed.” 

On Friday, San Francisco did open up eligibility to those 16 and over living in parts of the city most impacted by the pandemic, including Bayview, Hunters Points, and the Mission. Currently, you can visit a drop-in site at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital or the Southeast Health Center if you live in one of these ZIP codes: 94124, 94134, 94107, 94110, 94112, 94102, 94103, and 94130.

Quick bits: 

  • 💼 Salesforce, the city’s largest private employer, will welcome back some employees into its San Francisco offices starting in mid-May, the company announced on Monday. When it does, Salesforce will ask employees to provide proof of vaccination—something no other major Bay Area company, including Facebook and Google, has required yet. (Chronicle

  • 🛒 The popular Korean grocery chain, H Mart, is expected to open up its first San Francisco location sometime this month (at 3995 Alemany Blvd.). On Monday, H Mart announced it was hiring for the new store. (SF Gate

  • ⛳️ Hideki Matsuyama became the first golfer from Japan to win the Masters on Sunday, but did you know… second-place finisher, Will Zalatoris, was born in San Francisco? It was a fun-fact sorta glossed over during the tournament, perhaps because Zalatoris moved to Texas when he was just nine years old. (Chronicle

  • ⚾️ In other sports news, the Giants beat the Rockies in all three games this weekend to move to 6-3 on the season. (Examiner

And finally… Schlok’s, the popular bagel pop-up that had been operating out of The Snug on weekends, is getting its own brick-and-mortar shop, the Chronicle reported on Monday. The new store will be located at 1263 Fell Street (which is right next to Falletti market near the Panhandle) and should open by September. 

Co-founder Zack Schwab told me on Monday that the location was “perfect for what we need,” including “lots of windows that are perfect for a take-out bagel shop concept.” He also “loves the neighborhood and how central it is.” Plus, there’s parking! 

Schwab said customers can expect a fairly concise menu: bagels, lox, and schmears, along with a few prepared bagel sandwich options like an egg and cheese and veggie sandwich. They’ll also serve locally roasted coffee, though they haven’t decided on a partner yet. 

Schwab said that finally having their own space and “proper bagel-making equipment” will give the Schlok’s team “peace of mind regarding the quality and consistency of our products.” Still, he admitted, he’s a bit nervous about the permitting process and hopes the city’s new expedited measures can help. 

That’s all for today! Thanks so much for reading and we’ll see you tomorrow!

- Nick B. 

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