SAN FRANCISCO — The irritated mayor of San Francisco blasted an effort to rename some of the city’s public schools, saying the school district should focus on getting children back into classrooms if it wants to address equity and systemic racism instead of wasting resources on replacing names such as Jefferson, Washington and Feinstein.

Mayor London Breed delivered the harsh rebuke in a statement Friday after the San Francisco Chronicle reported  that parents and principals at 42 schools are scrambling to brainstorm new names during the pandemic that has kept the district’s 57,000 students at home.

Breed, a San Francisco native and public school graduate, called the effort “offensive,” as private schools re-open, providing students access to rich, in-person class-time while public school students stare at screens at home and fall further behind.

“Look, I believe in equity. It’s at the forefront of my administration and we’ve made historic investments to address the systemic racism confronting our city,” Breed said. “But the fact that our kids aren’t in school is what’s driving inequity in our city. Not the name of a school.”

The renaming process is being led by the School Names Advisory Committee, which was established following a San Francisco Board of Education resolution in 2018, said Laura Dudnick, a spokeswoman for the San Francisco Unified School District.

She said the panel has requested schools share alternate names by Dec. 18, although schools need not participate at this time.

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