OAKLAND (KPIX 5) — An East Bay high school is under scrutiny over plans to move to a location that could put kids in close contact with parolees and possibly sex offenders.
Leadership Public Schools may soon move their Oakland charter high school to 7700 Edgewater Drive, which is across the street from the parole office at 7717 Edgewater. Served by the same AC transit line, students could easily be sharing buses with parolees.
“I would feel terrified. I would not be paying attention on my education,” Karla Galvez, a LPS student told KPIX 5. “I would be worrying about, if I cross the street, what’s going to happen to me.”
Students, parents, even parolees are questioning why anyone would push to move a high school across the street from the parole office. About 50 parolees stop by the office each day, some of them are convicted sex offenders.
“They should have chosen a better campus to move to,” Galvez said.
LPS charter high school focuses on technology. They have been planning the move to the business park complex for three years.
Dr. Louise Waters, the school’s CEO, had called it an ideal location.
“Allowing our students to interact with small businesses, have internships, have entrepreneurial opportunities,” Waters said.
Just as the school prepares to move about 500 students to the business park to start the upcoming school year, administrators are suddenly having second thoughts.
“Our first priority is the safety and security of our students,” Waters said.
They are suspending the move, at least for now, and will soon make a final decision.
The CEO claims in three years of site research, they are just now finding out about the parole office, despite signage.
“We found this out. We’re glad that we found it out. And we’re moving forward,” Waters said.
For now, the school will remain at its current location at the former Castlemont High School.