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Archives 2015-2016

Welcome to Dr. Martin Luther King, jr. Academic Middle School, 2016-2017!!!!

August 3, 2016


Greetings Families and Students,


We would like to welcome the returning 7th and 8th grade students and the incoming 6th graders to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Academic Middle School’s 2016-2017 school year.  I hope everyone had a restful and fun summer.


Many changes were implemented last year to make MLK Middle School student-centered, family friendly, and accessible to the community at large. Those changes had a tremendous impact on the overall academic performance of students, increased transparency between the administration and families, and engaging multiple community stakeholders in the learning community at MLK Middle School. This year promises to bring more excitement as we build upon the successes from last year.


We look forward to growing the capacity of MLK Middle School and becoming the premier middle school in the district. Our efforts begin with parent involvement and participation in shaping the future of your children. We anticipate you joining our PTA, attending bi-monthly Coffee Chats (every 1st and 3rd Fridays at 8:45-9:45am) between administrators and parents, volunteering in classes and on field trips, and adding your voice to the overall MLK Middle School community.


We will see your child on Monday, August 15, 2016. Breakfast for students will be available at 8am. Homeroom begins at 8:30 sharp.


For 6th grade families, orientation is Monday, August 15, 8:30 - 10:00am. Families will meet the 6th grade teachers, staff and learn more about MLK and the resources we offer.


The bell schedule is attached. Please note we will be releasing students early every 3rd Friday at 1pm. Our Beacon Extended Learning Program will be open at 1pm for 3rd Fridays.



Mr. Michael Essien, Principal


Ms. Dinora Castro, Assistant Principal

At Community Boards 6th Annual San Francisco Peacemaker Awards presented on Friday, June 3rd, SFUSD & MLK Middle school student Da'Nille Lemon will presented with The Gail Sadalla Rising Peacemaker Award, which goes to a youth peacemaker, ages 12-24, who is making a difference in his/her school or community and setting an example for other youth in anti-violence and peacemaking activities.


Click here for more info:

This is the last week to complete the survey! Please take a moment to complete the survey by clicking on the link below!


Complete the Family Survey by clicking here!




Complete la Encuesta Familiar haciendo clic aquí!

Poly Latino Night: Thursday May 5, 2016 3:45 PM - 6:00 PM



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Plan on College! is a free, one-day, annual event for Bay Area students and their parents or guardians.


Attendees of Plan on College! will receive valuable information on course selection for high school, factors that impact college eligibility, college financial aid, and long-term benefits of a college education. Event is free, including free lunch for all attendees.

When: Saturday, April 23, 2016 from 8:45am - 1pm at MLK


More information at: 

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Connecting Families Workshop: Thursday April 21, 2016 6PM


Dinner Provided!!!


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The Carver Carnival at George Washington Carver Academic Elementary School on Saturday April 16th 10AM - 4 PM

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YMCA Beacon & MLK MS: Spring Break Down




(Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math) Night. 


Thursday March 24, 2016 5:00 PM


Come see your child's projects at MLK!

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Parent/Teacher/Student Conference Week - November 16 - November 20

November 16 - November 20 is MLK's second round of parent/teacher/student conferences. We will be piloting a new way of conferences called "student led conferences". Students have been taught to lead these conferences as a way to empower their own voices and to build their own leadership skills.


Youth will be responsible for bringing home sign ups to their families for times to come and meet with teachers. Please check in with your child.


We will be dismissing students at 2:30pm this week.


If you have any questions, please feel free to call the school at 330-1500 or email your child's teachers.

2/18/2016 Events!

Thank you to everyone that participated and attended our Celebrations and Vision of MLK. If you have any questions, please send us a message by clicking here. You can also give us a call or email us at


Black History Month & Lunar New Year Celebration: Thursday 02/18/2016 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM


Vision of MLK event Thursday 02/18/2016 5:30 PM – 7:00 PM

Parent/Teacher/Student Conference Week - November 16 - November 20

November 16 - November 20 is MLK's second round of parent/teacher/student conferences. We will be piloting a new way of conferences called "student led conferences". Students have been taught to lead these conferences as a way to empower their own voices and to build their own leadership skills.


Youth will be responsible for bringing home sign ups to their families for times to come and meet with teachers. Please check in with your child.


We will be dismissing students at 2:30pm this week.


If you have any questions, please feel free to call the school at 330-1500 or email your child's teachers.

Come to the MLK High School Night!

Thursday, 11/19/15, 6-8pm

******FREE DINNER*****


New leadership in the Bayview


By Richard Carranza on September 15, 2015 1:00 am


We are only as strong as our people. This is likely true for every organization, but I can definitely say it is true for our schools.

While everyone plays an important role, principals are the glue that holds together the multicultural, multigenerational complex communities called schools. We can’t acknowledge them enough.


That’s why I want to introduce you to three new principals working in the Bayview area who have formed a unique alliance to support each other and transform their schools. Principals Joe Truss, Emmanuel Stewart and Michael Essien get together to play basketball, drink coffee and talk about how to lead their schools, all of which serve students who face some shared challenges.


Principal Truss, Visitacion Valley Middle School

Truss grew up in a single parent home in the Tenderloin. He attended public schools in the San Francisco Unified School District all his life — Spring Valley Elementary, Francisco Middle School and then Lowell High. After the SFUSD, he went on to study Spanish at UC Berkeley and earned his teaching credential at Tufts University.


Fortunately for San Francisco, Truss came back as an assistant principal at the Academy (formerly the Academy of Arts and Sciences), where he worked to expand culturally relevant teaching, project-based learning and student portfolio assessment — all the while decreasing truancy by 20 percent.


Now, he is hard at work as the new principal at Visitacion Valley Middle School, which, he says, is focused on “love, literacy and liberation.”


“We make sure kids get to know each other, that they are welcomed
each day and they are celebrated,” Truss said. “We are creating a school our kids are excited to come to every day.”


Principal Stewart, Dr. George Washington Carver Elementary School

Stewart is another homegrown San Francisco educator who has been working in education for 24 years. He started out as a paraprofessional at Potrero Hill Middle School and Dr. William Cobb, and he now leads the school he taught at for 11 years: Dr. George Washington Carver Elementary School.


Stewart understands this work will not be easy; however, he’s often reminded of his own experiences in the SFUSD and sees himself in his students’ faces and smiles.


“I’m making sure that Carver achievers come here with the joy of learning every day,” Stewart said. “I know that I need to be here in the Bayview-Hunters Point community doing this work at this time.”


Principal Essien, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School

Essien completed his undergraduate degree in African American Studies and his master’s degree in education, both at UC Berkeley.

He’s been in public education for 24 years, with the first 21 of those in the classroom teaching math and working as a special education instructor.


“I love my work,” Essien said. “Teaching in an urban setting and supporting students to transform their learning experience and life trajectory is fulfilling work. I embrace the challenges.”


While the credentials of all three principals are impressive, their unwavering commitment to social justice and continuous improvement make them stand out. I see how our school leaders are always reflecting on their own work and learning from each other to make things better for our kids, and all I can say is that we’re lucky to have such tremendous school leaders.

Richard A. Carranza is the superintendent of the San Francisco Unified School District.

Come out to the Portola Community Clean Up!

Join the Community to beautify the Portola neighborhood! 

9am - 12pm

Lunch Provided! 

Mayor Ed Lee

San Francisco’s Foundation Donates $2.7 million, the Largest Single ​One Year Business Investment in SFUSD History, Mayor Urges More Private Sector Investment.

San Francisco, CA – Mayor Edwin M. Lee joined San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) Superintendent Richard Carranza and Marc Benioff, Chairman and CEO of and Chartiman of the Board of Directors for the Foundation, today to launch the Mayor’s Middle School Leadership Initiative, a first of its kind public-private partnership aimed at dramatically improving STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education in SFUSD and to announce Foundation’s donation to SFUSD, the largest single one year business investment in SFUSD history.

“Making sure San Francisco’s youth receive a quality education and are ready for college and ready for the jobs of the 21st Century are among my highest priorities,” said Mayor Lee. “That’s why I’m proud to partner with the San Francisco Unified School District, Foundation and other San Francisco technology companies to launch this initiative that will help SFUSD students focus on STEM learning, using the latest technology in the classroom and are prepared to compete for and win the jobs of the 21st Century economy and become our City’s next innovators of the future.”

In partnership with the Mayor’s Office, SFUSD and the Foundation, this initiative grew out of a shared goal to provide San Francisco comprehensive middle schools and principal leaders with the strategies, resources and support they need to foster and maintain high quality public schools that integrate the most innovative practices for teaching and learning.

Superintendent Richard Carranza

The first phase of this project is the introduction of 750 tablets equipped with applications and digital content, into select middle school math and science classrooms.  In conjunction with exceptional and tailored professional development for teachers, the objective of the project is to build teacher and school capacity to maximize the value of these technologies in order to further contribute to student mastery of 21st century content and to enhance STEM education in the curriculum.  When effectively implemented, STEM means removing the traditional barriers between science, technology, engineering and math and teaching the subject matters together. The U.S. Department of Commerce recently reported that, over the past decade, the number of new jobs involving STEM expertise has grown at a rate triple that of jobs that do not.

“The importance of an integrated STEM curriculum cannot be underestimated as we prepare students for an increasingly technological future,” said Superintendent Richard A. Carranza. “In partnership with the Mayor and leading businesses, I am confident that we are evolving our schools so that students will graduate increasingly prepared to be innovators and leaders. This is just the beginning of what I hope will be a long term partnership to benefit San Francisco’s children.”

"San Francisco’s future depends on providing our children a world class education that will prepare them for the careers of tomorrow,” said Marc Benioff, chairman and CEO,  “By combining our time, technology and financial resources, the Foundation is doubling down on our investment in the city’s youth – our next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs."

To support the district’s vision for building innovators for the future, Foundation has donated $2.7 million, $1.5 million of which is going to technology and technology infrastructure at SFUSD’s 12 comprehensive middle schools. The Initiative also established a $100,000 Principal’s Innovation Fund for each middle school principal to invest in their school’s ability to innovate and increase access to STEM opportunities. Foundation’s donation of volunteers, technology and financial resources, a philanthropic approachcalled the 1/1/1 model, is supporting The Mayor’s Middle School Leadership Initiative at the City’s 12 comprehensive middle schools.

In addition to the financial gift, the Foundation is committing to thousands of hours of employee volunteerism to support the Mayor’s Initiative.  This summer, employees donated more than 1,250 volunteer hours at San Francisco middle schools, including technology and leadership training, mentoring, and chaperoning a field trip for the entire 6th grade to the new Exploratorium.  Middle school principals, SFUSD administrative staff, the Mayor’s office and volunteers are collaborating on this effort via Salesforce Chatter, a collaboration platform. SFUSD is also working with local employees to develop an app on the Salesforce Platform that easily tracks and measures the success of the initiative over time.  

Mayor Lee and Marc Benioff encouraged other tech companies to work with the City’s public schools to help build the workforce for tomorrow. Autodesk and Zynga committed to partner with the school district at the launch at Martin Luther King Middle School.

Philanthropist Marc Benioff, Chairman and CEO of



About the Foundation
The Foundation is a global leader in corporate philanthropy. The unique 1/1/1 model harnesses the power of’s employee time, the Salesforce products and cash grants to increase the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations and higher education institutions. Since the Foundation's inception in 1999, employees have committed more than 500,000 hours of their time to volunteer and pro bono projects, more than 20,000 organizations in 110 countries are using donated and discounted Salesforce licenses and more than $50 million in grants have been awarded. For more information on the Foundation, please visit .

Principal Natalie Eberhard

Principal Natalie Eberhard addresses the crowd.