Oakland Unified School District Asks for Community Help to Save High School Athletics

An anonymous donor helps save girls golf and tennis from being cut

The Oakland Unified School District announced Monday two sports are being saved and are working on saving other high school program from being cut due to an ailing budget.

Girls golf and girls tennis are the two sports that are now off the chopping block after an anonymous donor put up $35,000 to save the upcoming season. Now the district is appealing to the community to help the other programs as well.

Ten sports were cut -- including tennis, wrestling, swimming and volleyball -- to help the district save $500,000. But then the district realized the cuts were impacting female athletes more than the boys. The cuts could also mean the district was in violation of Title 9, a federal law that prohibits discrimination based on gender.

"There was about twice as many girls that were effected by these cuts than there were boys, so once we saw those numbers on paper, we realized, OK, this is a problem," said John Sasaki, Oakland Unified School District spokesman.

The donation is a temporary fix for this year. The district faces the same issue next year.

"I'm still a bit worried because its back, but I don't know how long it's going to be back for," said Bonnie Guan, a student and tennis player. "I don't know if it's still going to be here after I'm gone. So, I still worry about that."

The district said its lawyers are still looking into whether they are in compliance with Title 9.

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