McClymonds High School

McClymonds High School

Coordinates: 37°49′4.82″N 122°16′43.03″W / 37.8180056°N 122.2786194°W / 37.8180056; -122.2786194

McClymonds High School
Motto School of Champions
Established 1915 [1]
Type Public secondary
Principal Kevin Taylor
Students approx. 800
Grades 9-12
Location 2607 Myrtle Street,
Oakland, California, USA
District Oakland Unified School District
Campus Urban
Colors Orange and Black
Mascot Warrior (formerly the Indian)
Newspaper The Warrior Times
A view of the entrance of McClymonds.

McClymonds High School is a public high school in the West Oakland neighborhood of Oakland, California, USA.

In addition to being the third oldest high school in Oakland, it is the larger of the two high schools in West Oakland (the other being Bunche High School), and the only high school in West Oakland operated by the Oakland Unified School District.



Early history (1915-2005)

In January 1915, McClymonds High School started in a small building formerly occupied by Oakland Technical High School. Originally, 60 students were enrolled in the school, which at that time was called Vocational High School. It was the first public school in California to offer summer school.

The school was named after J.W. McClymonds, who at one time was the superintendent of the Oakland Unified School District.

In 1927, with $325,000 spent on additional classrooms, the school became more of a regular school than a summer school. Then in 1933, the legislative act was passed, regulating school building construction. It said that schools should have steel and structural support on the inside. The building did not meet these requirements.

The school decided to move to 14th and Myrtle Street in the same building with Lowell Junior High School. McClymonds High thereby became a four year high school. The name changed from J.W. McClymonds to Lowell McClymonds and then to McClymonds Lowell High School.

Finally, in September 1938, the official name of the school became McClymonds, and it was moved to 26th and Myrtle.

McClymonds Educational Complex (2005-2010)

In 2005, McClymonds was split into three smaller schools, BEST, EXCEL, and Kizmet Academy, collectively known as McClymonds Educational Complex.

"Mack Is Back!" (2010-Present)

In 2010, McClymonds Educational Complex returned to being McClymonds High School. The school's 2010-11 theme is "Mack is Back!"

On September 24, 2010, at 2pm, the school opened a new, state-of-the-art football field, William Belford Stadium, named in honor of the late William "Bill" Belford (often called the "godfather" of McClymonds sports).[2]

Notable events and mentions in the media

Malcolm X gave a speech at McClymonds at a function sponsored by the Afro-American Association. A young Muhammad Ali spoke at the function. The Black Panthers co-founder Huey P. Newton was in attendance.[3]

Currently, many students are working in conjunction with students from nearby UC Berkeley to revitalize a dilapidated drug-ridden park into a history learning park and expand it into the school's campus.[4]

McClymonds was featured in the book Black in School: Afrocentric Reform, Urban Youth & the Promise of Hip-Hop Culture written by Shawn Ginwright.


Former hip-hop magazine writer and author Mark Xandrine Sneed taught English at McClymonds.

In 2007, McClymonds had over 100 graduates. In 2008, McClymonds had the highest CAHSEE test scores in the Oakland Unified School District.


Historically, McClymonds has performed excellently at sports.

The McClymonds varsity basketball team won a state Tournament of Champions held in 1980 at the Oracle Arena.

McClymonds offers a variety of sports, including football, baseball, basketball, cross-country, track, and others. Although McClymonds is separated into two schools, the sports teams are still one, under the mascot of the Warrior.

On May 16, 2006, the Oakland City Council adopted a Resolution, sponsored by Councilmember Nancy J. Nadel (District 3), congratulating the McClymonds Football Team For Excellence in Athletics and Academics[5], recognizing that McClymonds High School ranked #1 in the East Bay and Northern California as the high school with the most football players (9) attending Division I universities, under the direction of head football coach Alonzo Carter. McClymonds was the only high school in the nation that year with three Top 100 Prospects, and, with only 600-650 students, ranked #1 in Northern California for Division I Signees, and ranked #2 in the State, behind Long Beach Poly, which had 5,000 students.

On March 15, 2008, McClymonds achieved its first ever Division I state championship basketball win over Dominguez High School of Compton, California, 73-54, at the Arco Arena, as the culmination of their undefeated streak of 32 wins and no losses.[6]

Chappell Hayes Health Center

McClymonds' health center, founded by Children's Hospital doctor and UC Berkeley alumna Barbara Staggers and named after activist Chappell Hayes was opened in 2005. In creating the Health Center, Dr. Staggers partnered with Lisa Hardy, MD., Division Chief of Psychiatry also at Children's to ensure that mental health services would also be available to the school community. It serves McClymonds students, alumni, and members of the West Oakland community.[7]

Notable McClymonds alumni

McClymonds's motto is "School of Champions," as there are many famous McClymonds alumni:


  1. ^ The West Oakland Project A Photo Essay by Alison Yin [1]
  2. ^ [2] McClymonds High dedicates new football field
  3. ^ Hillard, David, Huey: The Spirit of the Panther, Thunder's Mouth Press, 2006.
  4. ^ News & Events: McClymonds Students Study to Rejuvenate Park
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Public Health Heroes Awards Ceremony
  8. ^ Lupien, Tony; Lowenfish, Lee (1980). The Imperfect Diamond: The Story of Baseball's Reserve System and the Men Who Fought to Change It. New York: Stein and Day. ISBN 0-8128-2709-0. 
  9. ^ Oakland Museum of California: Object Detail: Catalog ID: H96.1.2067

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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