SSFUSD Responds to Buri Buri School Construction Concerns

South San Francisco, CA                August 18, 2015

A view from a neighbors home Photo courtesy Randy Quok

A view from a neighbors home
Photo courtesy Randy Quok

Everything South City has received numerous complaints regarding construction at the District Schools undergoing upgrades these past few years. Currently there has been a more vocal outcry over uncovered dirt and the problems it is causing to those that live in the immediate area of Buri Buri School. A conversation came up our our Facebook page along with photos showing huge piles of dirt behind residential homes that are creating health issues and affecting the quality of life of our neighbors.  To that end we ‘tagged’ our City Manager Mike Futrell and other agencies in our media post and sent an inquiry to our newly appointed SSFUSD Superintendent Dr. Shawnterra Moore Thomas and we greatly appreciate their immediate response and direction of assistance as shared below.

From our City Manager via our FB:

The City and the School Board are not affiliated in any way. School construction is the responsibility of the South San Francisco School District. However, I am meeting with the new school superintendent this week and I plan to raise these issues with her as a call for action. Despite these technically being school system issues, I will keep tabs on them as “quality of life issues” impacting all of us in South San Francisco. I have always made myself available to you, the public, and although Facebook is not the best place to reach me, you can always call my cell at 650-676-0173 or visit me Monday through Friday at City Hall on Grand Avenue. – Mike Futrell

From our Superintendent Dr. Shawnterra Moore Thomas as she responded to a few concerns:

As for the dirt issues at Buri Buri, we are very aware of the concerns already and we are actively working with our construction crew to cover up the dirt pile. I understand the quality of life concerns. Just know that we are very aware and are working diligently on our end to do what we can for the community. They are very important to us!The person you’ll want to connect with is the Assistant Superintendent of Business, Mr. Michael Krause, and I’ve included him in this email.

From Michael Krause Assistant Superintendent, Business Services SSFUSD

Thank you for the opportunity to respond to the comments below.

The District understands the concerns about the dirt mound at Buri Buri Elementary School and staff want to ensure the public is informed about the ongoing construction. Half of the mound is active, meaning trucks are taking away dirt but also dumping dirt there. The other half is not active at this time and the contractor will be covering up the non-active half with plastic this week. Why is there so much dirt there? When the old portion of the school is demolished, the dirt will be needed to level the ground out. Should there be any leftover dirt, it will be hauled away. In the meantime, all efforts have been ongoing such as watering down the active dirt to decrease dust as well as covering up what can be covered. There is also a street sweeper that daily drives up and down the streets cleaning the dirt.  Also, at the end of the construction process, the District will be working with the homeowners located directly on the streets across from the four sides of Buri Buri to wash down their driveways. The District will also be working with the same homeowners to provide two car wash vouchers per residence so they can have their vehicles washed.

 For the field behind SSFHS, facilities staff are taking a look to see what is causing the concerns and they will be addressed shortly. Most, if not all of the construction work at South San Francisco High School is completed so there should not be much of an issue with the dirt/dust and noise level any longer.

 The District takes all concerns from the community seriously and wants to ensure the quality of life is as great as it can be in South San Francisco and will always strive to mitigate any concerns as quickly as possible. Should any neighbor have any concerns, they are more than welcome to email me directly at or call me at 650-877-8707.


For the original article on this issue please CLICK HERE




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Louis Romero
Louis Romero
6 years ago

Hello, my name is Louis Romero and I live around the corner on Alta Mesa Drive. I attended the meeting last night 10/20 during which it was stated that Mount Buri Buri is covered (with some kind of gorilla snot). that is not the case!! Unless that material is dirt colored. It hasn’t been covered for some time. As a result, the back of my house is layered with dirt. I contacted someone (construction company?) who said a cleaning company would be calling – still WAITING for that call!!

Todd Doherty
Todd Doherty
6 years ago

To Mr.Krause,as a home owner on the 300 block of Del Monte Ave.,the problem is with the dirt on our house which needs to be pressure washed,not the driveway only .The windows are filthy and there are numerous cracks in the driveway and to our brick planter box in the front yard which is only 4-5 years old.
Which was a white railing is now beige and there is little paint left after cleaning often that will have to be repainted.Living across the street from the new class rooms makes it impossible to come and go during the day with the parking in front of my house being taken everyday by lazy teachers who have to park right across from their classrooms.They need to park maybe in the church parking lot on El Campo.The problem is they take up spots (All day)instead of keeping those open for residence and quick pickup/drop off for the parents.Sincerely Todd Doherty
330 Del Monte Ave.