by George J Elbaum
St. Peter’s Elementary School, founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1878, is an elementary and middle school with approximately 300 students in Kindergarten through 8th Grade. The school is one of the Archdiocese of San Francisco Catholic Schools and a vital part of the parish, a predominantly Latino community in San Francisco’s Mission District. Since its foundation, St. Peter’s has served all economic levels of the community by providing a well-rounded academic and Catholic education in a partnership with parents, who are recognized as the primary educators of their children. The school recognizes its important role in the growth and development of students and their families, and it thus promotes Gospel values and fosters peace, justice, integrity, honesty and love for learning.
As part of that effort, St. Peter’s has a month-long study of the Holocaust for its 8th grade students taught by Nina Martinez Fuaau, Language Arts Teacher, who organized today’s event and took photos during it. This was my third visit to St. Peter’s, and in preparation the students read Elie Wiesel’s Night and are currently viewing Schindler’s List, so their questions during Q&A reflected their knowledge plus natural curiosity, which I always admire. Upon my arrival I was greeted at the school’s parking lot by two helpful and enthusiastic students, Anderson and Emilio, with whom I had a nice chat while they guided me to the room for my presentation and afterwards escorted me back to my car.
My presentation was arranged by Nikki Bambauer, Program Coordinator of the Jewish Family and Children’s Services’ Holocaust Center.