Safety scare, basketball game postponed

Mack v. Oakland High, 2008Yesterday afternoon I was putting the finishing touches on a story about security at Oakland’s high school basketball and football games when I got an email from our prep sports writer, Jimmy Durkin: Friday’s basketball game between Oakland High School and McClymonds was postponed, for safety reasons.

Part of the reason for the decision, I learned today, was an incident that happened at lunchtime yesterday, a couple of blocks from McClymonds. A car pulled up to a crowd of people in front of a convenience store on Market Street — it’s a popular lunch spot for students — and someone inside the car fired a shot.

No one was hit, according to OUSD Spokesman Troy Flint. But whoa.

Flint said the police want more time to get to the bottom of the shooting before holding a game. But there’s another home game scheduled for Tuesday, against Oakland Tech, so we’ll see what happens. Especially because of the fight that happened on the street after the Mack-Tech game, at Oakland Tech.

On another note: A letter about yesterday’s shooting near McClymonds was supposedly going to go home today, according to Flint. It’ll be the first official word to families about what happened. Do you think that’s soon enough? I know they don’t want to jeopardize the police investigation, put out false information, or get the district sued, but I still wonder. Flint did say the district plans to have an automatic phone and e-mail alert system in place by April; maybe that will help.

You can read more about the security at Oakland games in Sunday’s paper.

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Nextset

    When Depression II begins it is unlikely any funding will remain for these games. The security costs alone will result in their termination. The budget projections for 2011-2012 are so dire even essential functions are not covered.

    Unless you can get the workers to work for free.

  • harlemmoon

    In a 2.5 universe, communication should not be an issue.
    Again, the hand-wringing over when to alert parents, students and staff about a horrific criminal incident is unacceptable. And, frankly, it would not be tolerated in more forward-thinking, collaborative cities and school districts where safety is truly a priority.
    What good is an automatic phone and e-mail alert system if there is going to be a protracted committee debate about when to use it?
    Surely, the smart, highly paid folks in the district can figure out a way to communicate issues of concern to its constituents without jeopardizing the police investigation, putting out false information or getting the district sued.

  • Cranky Teacher

    Nextset, don’t you think it is a LITTLE silly to keep basing all your analysis on a dire prediction of the FUTURE which may or may not come true?

  • Nextset

    Cranky: For 2010 and 2011 the Property, Sales Tax and Income Tax projections are pretty clear. CA Municipalities live on these numbers. You are going to see the first wave hit this July with severe layoffs and service reductions in your city and county services. The state government is in worse shape for this July than last year and the one time fixes they did last year are now gone. 2011-2012 will be worse not better. Absent a large federal bailout of CA, Municipal Bankruptcies will be mentioned a lot.

    Yes the sun will keep rising, but we are going to have more change in the next 24 months than the previous 5 years. Not good.

    The effects of the layoffs will reverbrate around in the state and local economies. These civil service workers are important to the middle class. When the number of them shrink as far as is projected, it will further affect property values and tax revenues.

    So yes, for the forseeable future the schools are in deep doo doo. Their revenue will fall significantly enough so that it will be the end of business as we knew it. Things will have to change – class size, elimination of things that were taken for granted.

    I’m not a fortune teller but things will change when the budgets implode. So I just can’t see the districts spending money for basketball game security anymore. Or basketball games either. Perhaps these programs can arrange other funding.

    It is not a stretch to make projections for 24 months. To that extent the future is here and we’re broke. When you’re out of funds things get stopped. Like the newspaper delivery. Workers, consumers and families are better off when they anticipate possible/probable changes and allow for them. You should too. Better get your teeth fixed now. There is every reason to beware that things (in short order) are going to get historically bad for some time to come.

    Some people will do better than others in this.

  • anonymous

    Hi Katy. I just wanted to make a correction/clarification.

    A Teleparent message from the calling system was sent out almost immediately. Parents knew within 20 minutes and were told they could pick students up.

    The letter that you refer to is going home with report cards today. It was received yesterday.

  • Katy Murphy

    Thanks for the information. I asked about that, and was told the letter was the first notification from the school.