Increased police presence at San Ramon high school graduation after prior threat

It’s a day many young people and their parents have been waiting for, graduation. At California High School in San Ramon, 650 students donned a cap and gown to receive a diploma. Some parents couldn't help but notice the extra police presence.

“It makes me proud of that the City of Ramon come and support and make sure we are safe on campus,” said Parent Christine Montalto. “Another part of me is nervous.”

Those who entered the stadium were greeted by police patrol cars. Officers were visible as well. The district said, it's an added security measure given the current climate.

“There’s a national climate we are experiencing right now that are related to the tragedies that have happened nationwide,” said Elizabeth Graswich of the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. It’s a difficult time for schools, for parents, for students.”

“You can't go a month without some news story of a school shooting nowadays it's not something we can forget about,” said Graduate Kaylee Alexander.

Back in April, a freshman at California High School was arrested after he planned a shooting to take place on April 20, 2021, which is 22 years after the deadly Columbine shooting. Police learned of the plan after the teen tried to recruit a friend, who later told a school resource officer.
“It’s scary, just absolutely frightening to say the least,” said Montalto. “I did not send my child to school. I was scared.”

On Friday, San Lorenzo High School was put on lockdown. It’s the same school where a 16-year-old was arrested after a loaded handgun was found in his backpack this week.

“ “I think we should be extending our help to the people who feel really low and depressed so these negative thoughts don't occur again,” said Graduate Ishaan Aggarwal. 

However, these students said they will not be ruled by fears but are hopeful for change.

“I just think it's sad,” said Alexander. “I’m glad I’m getting out of it. I’m really hopeful we will turn it around for the students who are still coming through.”

The district said it's taking a closer look at its security measures on campus following that incident. The district says extra security was at all four graduations Friday.