OUSD Superintendent: We Denounce Racist and Threatening Messages Sent to Chabot Elementary School Community

Chabot Elementary in North Oakland was evacuated on Tuesday morning after a racist bomb threat was emailed to the school principal. Last night, OUSD Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammel sent this message to the OUSD community. (Photo credit: KRON 4)

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Dear Oakland Unified Community,

I want to reach out to share with you some details of a concerning situation that developed this week at Chabot Elementary School.

The school community is on alert due to racist and threatening emails and calls that members of the school community have received, including bomb threats today. The threats are in response to a school event this past weekend. The school and its Equity and Inclusion Committee hosted a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) Playdate on the afternoon of Saturday, August 26 which was intended to build and promote positive affinity spaces for students and families of color. 

Chabot is a diverse school community with more than half of the student population identifying as students of color. This playdate aimed to create an affinity space where Black, Brown, and API families can build and sustain connection and belonging at the schoolIt’s one of many examples of the important work we do for equity and inclusion across the District.

The District first learned of these threatening messages yesterday, shortly before noon. We immediately contacted the Oakland Police Department (OPD) which began preparing an internal intelligence report and sent officers to the school before classes let out for the day.

As a precaution, the OUSD Central Safety Support Team was assigned to be on campus throughout the day today. At about 8:00 am, school and District leaders learned of the bomb threat against the school. District officials again immediately alerted OPD, relocated students and staff who were on site to the baseball field adjacent to the school and advised parents dropping off students to take them home. Officers arrived shortly after, secured the campus and conducted a thorough bomb search, before declaring an all-clear for Chabot to reopen tomorrow.

This incident, along with multiple threatening emails, phone calls and social media posts are being taken seriously by Oakland Unified School District and the Oakland Police Department. The FBI is also now involved in this active investigation.

The Mayor’s Office has committed to maintaining police presence near the school for the remainder of this week. District and City leaders, in partnership with the school administration, will host a community town hall next week. We plan to welcome students, staff and families back to the Chabot campus tomorrow morning with coordinated safety and mental health support in place.

OUSD remains, as always, committed to the physical safety and emotional well-being of our students, families and educators.

In community,

Dr. Kyla Johnson-Trammell

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