District Officials: Upper Darby High School Winter Sports Closed To General Public

UPPER DARBY, Pa. (CBS) — Winter sporting events at Upper Darby High School will no longer be open to the general public. The school district made the announcement on Friday night and it went into effect beginning with Saturday’s 1 p.m. boys’ basketball game.

In what the Upper Darby School District says is an attempt to better manage the behavior of some spectators and visitors, officials have implemented strict new rules for wrestling matches and boys’ and girls’ basketball games.

Those events are no longer open to the public following a previously undisclosed altercation at a basketball game on Dec. 17 involving some in the crowd.

The district says it was an embarrassing incident — one that led to fights breaking out off campus.

Neighboring police departments were forced to respond.

“My son coaches the JV team so any kind of extra protection in any area is worth it,” Betsy Moore said.

As a result, the school district will now require the names of all teammates’ family members and students will have to show school-issued identification in order to purchase tickets.

Outside the high school, there was support for the security crackdown.

“They don’t know how to conduct themselves when they come to a game,” said George Burrell, a grandparent of a student. “Bad enough the kids fight, you got the adults who want to fight. It’s a safety issue. Nobody wants their kids hurt. You see what happened with that football game in Jersey with a bunch of adults there that did the shooting.”

But Upper Darby officials have been grilled across social media.

Some wrote that the decision to ban the public and alumni is ridiculous.

Others claim they’ll withhold financial support.

One man said the district has proven to be an embarrassment.

Visiting teams will have to submit a list of invited parents and family members, who will then be able to buy a ticket at the gate.