Affordable housing applications for San Francisco educators available

San Francisco is taking steps to make sure that educators who serve the city can live in the city as well.

The high cost of housing is notorious in San Francisco. 

Now the city is taking steps to try to bring those costs down, to bring in and retain the best and brightest educators.

Construction is still underway at Shirley Chisholm Village in San Francisco's Sunset District. But already, applicants are asking to be among the first to live in the 135 units of affordable housing set aside specifically for educators. 

The district says in the midst of a teacher shortage, the housing is part of an effort to bring in and retain the best and brightest. 

"This is a great place to educate students," said Dr. Matt Wayne, Superintendent of San Francisco Unified School District. "But, so often people have to spend their time and energy focused on finding affordable housing. So this gives us an opportunity to give our staff an opportunity to have affordable housing and focus their time and energy on the classroom."

The application process opened on Tuesday, runs to April 23 and is income restricted. The first residents could move in as early as this fall. The new residents will be selected through a lottery process. 

The city says there are rental options ranging from studios to three bedrooms and two bath units. "We have a range of units to support new educators, people maybe at the beginning of their careers," said Dr. Wayne. "Maybe starting a family to family units. We have five floors, and I've had a chance to visit. These are million dollar views."

The district says the housing even includes common areas where teachers can gather and work on their education plans collaboratively with other educators. The whole project is built on property already owned by the school district, helping to streamline the process. "There is a recognized need for educator housing in the state and across the country and this is a first of its kind in the city, and for us, what we hope to be the first of many," said Dr. Wayne.

In fact, the city has two similar projects in the works, another rental property and a property where educators could actually buy a unit of affordable housing, so the educators could start to build equity, and live and teach in the city.

For more information on SFUSD employee housing, click here