03 Oct WCCUSD Changes Football Game Security Following Shooting
By Michel J. Fitzgerald
The West Contra Costa County School District (WCCUSD) has implemented a series of changes to increase security at football games in response to violence in recent weeks, including three teenagers who were wounded in a shooting near the DeAnza High School campus after Friday’s game.
“The safety of WCCUSD students, staff, and community members is our top priority and these changes will allow our students, athletes, staff and fans to focus on enjoying the games and the educational experiences they offer,” Superintendent Matthew Duffy said in a press release.
Among the changes, varsity football games are now scheduled to start at 5 p.m. on Fridays. Junior varsity games start at 5 p.m. on Thursdays. Those games typically started at 7 p.m.
Additional security personnel and administrators will be assigned to attend games.
District officials also said student attendance will be restricted to WCCUSD high school students with proper school identification. Other students may attend, if they are accompanied by an adult.
Duffy said some of the new measures might be “inconvenient” and some people may disagree with them.
“But staff regularly meets to review and refine our safety procedures,” Duffy said. “We will continue to gather input from students, staff, and community members and will consider implementing those ideas as appropriate or practical.”
The district’s changes include:
- School administrators and/or police officers may cancel games for any safety concern at any time.
- There will be periodic announcements detailing behavior expectations at every game.
- Both teams will meet on the field before the game to promote sportsmanship.
- All spectators must be seated during sporting events, except when the stadium is full. In that case, spectators will be allowed to stand in a prearranged control area.
This week, Kennedy plays at Hercules High and Richmond High hosts Vallejo.