A California high school softball program in the midst of both a Title VI and Title IX lawsuit believes that anger over those legal proceedings served as the motivation to deliberately dump out team equipment.
As reported by the San Jose Mercury News, the Tennyson High School (Hayward, Calif.) softball team had its uniforms and a large amount of team equipment taken out of a locked storage locker and thrown into a dumpster. The dumping, which was not undertaken at the behest or in collaboration with anyone from the softball program, was luckily recovered from a dumpster behind the school before it was emptied.
That recovery apparently saved the Tennyson program hundreds, possibly even thousands, of dollars, but it also laid bare the tension and frustration between different programs on the same campus. On Monday, not long after the episode concluded, Tennyson softball coach Steve Griggs resigned from his position out of frustration with a lack of support from the rest of the school.
“I don’t want to be part of it anymore,” Griggs told the Mercury News. “This was deliberate. The lock was removed … and time spent to throw it all away. It was the only locker cleaned out that we can tell from (where the equipment was thrown in) the dumpster.”
While school district officials contend that the dumping was purely inadvertent, those close to the softball program remain convinced that it was made out of spite against the program for the two discrimination lawsuits. They’re now considering filing a third lawsuit against the school district for discarding the team’s equipment, regardless of the team’s ability to retrieve it after it was thrown out.
Whether that new lawsuit moves forward or not, it’s clear that the discord between the different programs on the Tennyson campus has reached a near breaking point.