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Cal High has calm day of school after threats; most kids stay home

Increased police presence around San Ramon campus included FBI support

After receiving multiple graffiti threatening mass violence on Thursday at California High School in San Ramon, school district staff said that it was a peaceful, if not much less populated than usual, day at school.

While a considerable police presence was found both on and around the campus, many parents decided to keep their children home away from school anyway -- approximately 80% of Cal High students did not report to school Thursday, according to San Ramon Valley Unified School District spokesperson Elizabeth Graswich.

“It was a very peaceful, calm and positive day at the school,” Graswich told DanvilleSanRamon.com. “We are incredibly grateful to our students who have been coming forward with information to help with the investigation. The message has been clear that they want to have a safe school environment. They are the heroes today.”

The first threatening message was found in the boys’ bathroom on campus on May 1, and read “Cal will be shot up 5/9. Final warning,” exactly one week later an additional threat in a different on campus boys’ bathroom that read “Tomorrow, library will be shot up first, then courtyard and then myself” and was followed by a racist comment, according to Cal High Principal Chris George.

While the FBI has lended its support to the school district and the San Ramon Police Department, the investigation is ongoing with no suspect having yet been publicly identified.

“I cannot commend our students enough for their support today. Since making the announcement this morning regarding the additional threat, we have had many students come forward either in person or through the anonymous tipline reporting information. We are working very closely with San Ramon Police to follow up on each and every one of these reports and will communicate with staff and parents should we identify the person responsible for the graffiti,” George said in an email to parents sent on Wednesday.

George added that additional counselors have been made available for students as well as staff and encouraged anyone who has information to contact him at 803-3210.

Both the San Ramon Valley Unified School District and San Ramon Police Department have a standing policy of “if you see something or know something, say something,” for issues related to school safety. Each school has its own anonymous tip line link posted to their website that anyone can use to send information, related to this case or others.

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