SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — A campaign has been launched to raise money for a new football field and athletic facilities at Sacramento Charter High School.
The school’s football program and an Oak Park-based nonprofit are teaming up to raise money for the upgrades.
Julius Douglas, founder of Ceaze the Moment, and Sacramento High Dragons head coach Kimbbie Drayton recently launched a GoFundMe page to help raise money to upgrade the football field and the team’s locker room.
“Other high schools got it, McClatchy, Valley, Burbank and Oak Park is getting overlooked,” Douglas told FOX40 in a phone interview. “Why is Sacramento High School getting overlooked?”
While other schools in the metro area have received upgrades to their football stadiums and fields, Sacramento High has been left behind when it comes to facilities and maintenance. Before every home game, its football staff and players paint the field themselves.
Due to the conditions of the field, games are sometimes canceled or rescheduled when it rains because the field is flooded with water. There are also no bleachers at the football field and there were times when lawn chairs were brought out for seating.
“When it rains, we can’t even walk out there,” said Ken Powell, Dean of Students of St. Hope Public Schools. “We had a water hose or pipe burst out in the field and for like two weeks, water was just running on the field. It was just overflowing with water.”
St. Hope Public Schools is the organization that governs charter schools in Sacramento.
As of Wednesday morning, the campaign has raised $7,815 of its goal of $10,000. Funds from the campaign will also be used to upgrade the program’s locker room and to replace benches.
“That gives me hope that the community is pushing and believing in the vision and they believe in these kids,” Douglas said. “They want to see these kids at their best.”
Sacramento High was founded in 1856 and is the second oldest public school in California. The school is located on 2315 34th Street in Oak Park, which has been its location since 1924. It officially adopted its current form as a charter school within the Sacramento City Unified School District in 2003.
“We’re the oldest school in the west of Mississippi and we shouldn’t look like that, this is Sacramento High School. We’re representing Sacramento,” said Ken Powell, Dean of Students of St. Hope Public Schools.
In June, Sacramento High players called for donations in a short YouTube video to raise money for new uniforms, a new locker room, and travel expenses. The team reached its goal of $3,000 for that fundraiser.
The Dragons finished the 2021 season with a 9-3 record and competed in the playoffs. Sacramento High drew the No. 6 seed in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division 3 bracket, meaning it’ll be the higher-seeded team for at least one game.
But when the Dragons’ first round game was around the corner, their game against Golden Valley of Merced had to be moved to a neutral site at Rosemont High School due to the conditions of their field and not having bleachers.
The Dragons won their playoff game against Cougars 41-19, but it didn’t feel like a home field advantage for the team.
“The community missed out on supporting and being there for our kids and celebrating our kids,” Powell said. “They’re missing the tradition of Sacramento High School because we had to move a playoff game.”
The Dragons are scheduled to start the 2022 season on the road against Stagg High School in Stockton on Aug. 19. Sacramento High’s first home game is scheduled against McNair of Stockton on Aug. 27 at 1 p.m.