Lockdown drill canceled after discovery of threatening graffiti message leads many students to stay home from school


Irene Yuan

The quad during lunch today, which was unusually empty due to the large number of student absences. Many students chose to remain home today, following the discovery of a threatening graffiti message in a Dobbins boys bathroom yesterday.

by Kathy Fang and Arushi Saxena

This story was updated at 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 6.

This is a developing story. Check Harker Aquila for future updates.

Following the discovery of a threatening graffiti message in a Dobbins boys bathroom, tomorrow’s lockdown drill has been canceled, and the school day will follow a normal B-day schedule, with school meeting from 9:35 a.m. to 10:05 a.m., office hours from 10:10 a.m. to 10:40 a.m. and sixth period from 10:50 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.

“While we are committed to routine drills of all kinds on all of our campuses to help our community be prepared, we feel that the timing of this will increase anxiety for the students. We will reschedule this at a more suitable time,” Head of School Brian Yager wrote in an email to upper school parents.

To ensure campus safety, both uniformed and undercover police officers will continue to be present on campus tomorrow and will remain through the end of the following week. Student absences will be excused throughout the week.

According to Yager’s email to parents, the school has opened investigations into the source of the graffiti, with the help of the San Jose Police Department and outside investigators. Administrators are also working on organizing an optional parent meeting next week for parents to raise concerns, ask questions and receive advice from experts. The time of this meeting will be announced by the end of the week.

According to Assistant to the Dean of Student Affairs Amy Hauck, about 50 percent of upper school students were absent from school today, leading to the readjustment of teachers’ class plans and the cancellation of various school events, including today’s senior class meeting and some after school activities.

Tomorrow’s track and field interest meeting has been canceled as well and will be rescheduled to a later date. All other school activities will resume as usual tomorrow.

Students with any concerns or information are encouraged to speak with teachers, counselors, administrators and any other adults on campus.

Additional reporting by Eric Fang and Lucy Ge.