Oakland charter school students retrieve campus belongings after Wednesday's shooting

ByCornell Barnard via KGO logo
Sunday, October 2, 2022
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On Saturday, parents and their kids were allowed to return to King Estates campus to collect belongings left behind after Wednesday's shooting.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- It's been a difficult week for students and staff at Oakland's King Estates Campus, where a shooting left six adults injured on Wednesday. Oakland police are still searching for suspects. On Saturday, parents and their kids were allowed to return to the campus to collect belongings left behind in the chaos.

"I'm feeling OK. I do worry about the people that might have been hurt," said 8th grader Amari McDaniel.

13-year-old Amari returned to Oakland's Bay Tech Charter School Saturday to collect his backpack, left behind Wednesday when students ran from the school, escorted by police after 30 rounds were fired. Among the six adults injured, included two students.

"I know that I'm OK. I checked in with friends to see if they were OK," Amari said.

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"We were all coming up, waiting to get our kids, not understanding that we could've come right into the line of fire, which makes the situation all the more difficult for everyone involved," said parent Michael McDaniel.

With security guards standing watch, there were plenty of hugs from Bay Tech Middle School Principal Cesley Frost, welcoming more than 300 students and parents back to collect belongings on the King Estates campus, which is shared by multiple schools.

"We have the support of the community. We have volunteers walking students back to their classrooms to pick up their items," Frost said.

Coco the therapy horse was there to help put students at ease. Psychologists say processing the trauma is key.

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"And we have to talk to this. Everyone is in a fight or flight mode after a traumatic event. It's important to talk about feelings," said school psychologist Kelly McCrary.

"We're listening to families, we're listening to staff, students and taking it day by day," Frost added.

Principal Frost doesn't know when students will return to class; no return date has been set. Amari isn't sure he's ready.

"I don't know about coming back. I'm not sure," he said.

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"I've done everything I can do as a father. I have to sit with discomfort. I'm sending my son back to school, is it going to be ok?" said Michael McDaniel.

Oakland police say the victim's shots were not the intended targets but innocent bystanders.

"It's such a tragedy what we experienced, but we're strong -- Bay Tech strong -- and we'll get through this together," McCrary said.

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