Raiders Donate $250,000 to Help Save Oakland Unified School District Sports Programs

Fewer Oakland students are going to miss out on sports this year thanks to anonymous donations and a $250,000 donation Tuesday by the Oakland Raiders, a school district spokesman and the Raiders said.

"This donation from the Raiders is like a last-second game-winning touchdown," Oakland Unified School District Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell said in a statement.

But while the Raiders donation is like a touchdown, more points are needed to save all the sports slated to be cut this year.

School district spokesman John Sasaki said the district needs $500,000 to save all the sports this year and other money is needed to keep the sports alive long-term.

Slated for elimination were badminton, boy's golf, boy's and girl's swimming, boy's tennis, boy's volleyball and wrestling, which is a co-ed sport.

Girl's golf and girl's tennis were saved recently with a $35,000 donation from an anonymous donor and another donation saved girl's lacrosse, Sasaki said.

A separate donation may save wrestling.

Sasaki could not say which sports will benefit from the Raiders generosity but donations so far has gone toward fall sports because they will be starting soon or have already started.

In a statement, Raiders owner Mark Davis said, "The prospect of these kids losing their dreams was difficult to hear for everyone in the community. After school athletics are an important part of the high school experience and this donation will keep student-athletes on the playing fields in Oakland."

The Raiders will allocate the funds through the East Bay Community Foundation and the donation will be coordinated with the Oakland Athletic League, which is comprised of six comprehensive senior high schools in the district.

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