SF voters to weigh in on Beach Chalet turf war


A city project that would install artificial turf and stadium lighting at the Beach Chalet soccer fields at the west end of Golden Gate Park has survived numerous challenges over the last four years, including appeals to the California Coastal Commision and the courts. But this November, San Francisco voters will have the final say. Read more »

SFUSD students may get new police protections


Students who run afoul of the police may gain new protections under an agreement between the San Francisco Police Department and San Francisco Unified School District up for vote at tomorrow’s Board of Education meeting

The new agreement explicitly calls for parents to be notified when their children are taken into the custody of police, or are questioned as a victim or a witness. The agreement also introduces graduated steps that increase the burden on school administrators and the police to exhaust all other options before arresting a student.

“What we’re outlining in this policy is that the school system has the first responsibility to ensure discipline and safety, but we don’t want to overreact or push students toward the criminal justice system unless it’s absolutely necessary,” Board of Education Commissioner Matt Haney told the Guardian. Read more »

Girls-only hackerspace teaches critical thinking through crafts


Get out your glue sticks girls, it’s time to get crafty. Turns out, all that glitters really is gold for summer campers who will wind up at the girls-only craft camps that Curious Jane is hosting in Marin County this summer. Young women aged six to 12 will glean a wealth of knowledge from DIY-centered classes aimed towards not just inspiring creativity, but cultivating critical thinking skills through projects -- costume design, storyboarding graphic novels, toy design, and more.Read more »

Sequestration cuts would hit the Bay Area's most vulnerable


While the looming federal budget cuts known as sequestration were designed to equally hit Democratic and Republican party priorities, from social services to the military budget, in the Bay Area they would disproportionately target society's most vulnerable citizens and strain already-stretched local agency budgets.

If Congress and the White House fail to forge a budget deal by March 1, the cuts could begin to withdraw $9-10 billion of federal support from the California. In the Bay Area, these cuts would have the biggest impact on low-income families, the homeless, victims of domestic violence, adults living with AIDS, and children ages 3-5.

Back in September, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee signed a U.S. Conference of Mayors' letter that called on federal lawmakers to resolve the budget conflict before the sequestration cuts could take effect, labeling the budget cuts "a threat" to local economies nationwide. Now, with the deadline looming, city officials and social service providers across the Bay Area are bracing for the impact. Depending to how the cuts are eventually allocated, San Francisco alone could lose more than $10 million in critical social services.

"All across the city, the sequestration hurts those most in need of services and support," Gentle Blythe, spokesperson with the San Francisco Unified School District, told the Guardian.

Read more »

"Z is for Zest": A kids book of alphabet affirmations


Perhaps you have run aground of late, or know someone who has. Maybe you've forgotten your alphabet (or know somebody who has.) At any rate, a Bay Area couple would like to help. Rebecca Kovan and Daniel MacIntyre have put together a lovely, illustrated ABCs book perfect for remembering your values. Its name is Alphabet Living, and we challenge you to click through the above slideshow and not dissolve in a puddle of love. Or a stain of irritation, depending at what point in your Folsom Street Fair comedown you are. Read more »

How to be a sex-positive parent, from a woman who knows


“It’s almost a cliché to say that families come in all shapes and sizes, but they really do”

I’ve always found the expression “the birds and the bees” queer. As a child I somehow knew the expression had sexual connotations, but I could never understand why the birds and bees were having sex together. They seem like such an odd pairing.

Airial Clark, or as she's known on her blog, the Sex-Positive Parent, could have explained to a prepubescent me that the expression was merely a metaphor about having a talk about sex with kids. More importantly, I’m hoping Clark will teach me how to explain to my future child how it is that one of their daddies used to be a little girl. Read more »

Sure cure for election burnout? Watch this video of activist kids summer camp


So what if the most popular adjective to describe this week's election was "adorable"? By all accounts, we have a generation on the up with the vigor and verve to right all the atrocities ours has committed in regards to social justice, sustainable food systems, fossil fuel dependence, etc. At least, such is the impression given by the promo video sent to us by Youth Empowered Action Camps, a project started by activist Nora Kramer in the hopes of providing a safe, fun place for kids to find their cause. Wanna see hope, encapsulated? Keep going for the video and more info on raddest summer camp ever. Read more »

Kids, dogs, and naked people in Dolores Park


The interwebs are all buzzy over the notion that some parents might want a fence around the playground in Dolores Park. Uptown Almanac denounces the Dolores Park Brats. Sfist says it's all a plot to undermine gay beachRead more »

Free Muni for kids makes sense

A significant reduction in car use would more than pay for youth passes


EDITORIAL San Francisco is a transit-first city that has spent millions of dollars over the years trying to convince people to ride Muni. And yet, one of the best and most effective ways to get people out of their cars is facing surprising opposition.Read more »

Green shopping guide: 7 shops for kids and housewares


Children, don't let your parents grow up to throw away aluminum foil. Now that you're a big kid, with attendant home cleaning and offspring-maintaining concerns, there's little reason to stop paying attention to the environment -- in fact, what with the better-world-for-the-little-ones hope, you might find yourself doubling down on decorating motifs that will save the world.

Here's a passel of stores (locally-based online enterprises and brick-and-mortar both) in the Bay where you can shop with a clean conscious for housewares and kid's items. We're guiding around enviro shopping all this week -- check out yesteday's guide to garden stores. Read more »