A banner reads "Oakland Educators Say Fund Education, Not War on Gaza" at an Oakland Unified School District meeting Nov. 9, 2023. (Photo/Courtesy Anonymous)
A banner reads "Oakland Educators Say Fund Education, Not War on Gaza" at an Oakland Unified School District meeting Nov. 9, 2023. (Photo/Courtesy Anonymous)

U.S. Dept. of Education announces antisemitism investigations of S.F. and Oakland school districts

The U.S. Department of Education announced Tuesday that the San Francisco Unified School District and Oakland Unified School District are among several new targets of antisemitism investigations.

Both districts have experienced a rash of controversy over Israel in recent months: Jewish parents in Oakland have begun pulling their students out of public schools after incidents including the local teachers union voting on a measure calling for an end to U.S. aid to Israel, while San Francisco’s district recently reviewed a contract with a local anti-Zionist group that had organized a walkout for Palestinians and another protest.

The San Francisco teachers union also passed a resolution in November calling for a ceasefire in Gaza, which prompted the head of the local Jewish Community Relations Council to label the union “bigoted.”


RELATED: Citing safety, dozens of Jewish families are leaving Oakland public schools


In response to queries, a representative for Oakland’s district said it does not comment on pending legal matters but added, “OUSD is a sanctuary district, inside Oakland, a sanctuary city, inside California, a sanctuary state, which means we support all students, families and staff, regardless of religion, heritage, ethnicity, where they came from, or how they got here. We protect all students, and harassment of anyone is never acceptable.

“In this time of heightened tensions because of what’s happening in the Middle East, we are regularly communicating to our community, reminding them of our core values of love and support, so it should be clear that everyone is welcome and valued in our schools,” the statement continued.

Representatives for the San Francisco district and both teachers unions did not return requests for comment.

The other institutions under investigation announced this week are University of Minnesota, Temple University and Brown University.

JTA

Content distributed by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency news service.