December 13, 2019
December 13, 2019

Dear PAUSD Families,

This message follows communication sent by Gunn Principal Kathie Laurence to her school community a short time ago:

Late last night, the District was made aware of an anonymous threat regarding a possible shooting at Gunn High School, allegedly to occur today. Through the remainder of the evening and into the early hours of this morning, the Palo Alto Police Department worked closely with us as they identified the student responsible for making the threat. Palo Alto Police responded quickly and the student was taken into custody this morning. Due to the privacy rights of minors, any further information regarding the student will not be shared publicly by the school district.

After consultation with the Palo Alto Police Department, we have determined that it is safe for Gunn to be open today. This incident was specific to Gunn and did not involve any other PAUSD schools. We appreciate the individuals who notified authorities immediately upon recognizing a possible threat. It is a great example of how informed, alert communities play a critical role in keeping our schools safe.

Any event of this nature can be unsettling. In addition, we know that this time of year can be stressful for students and families as finals and Winter Break approach. The Wellness Center and counselors will be available for any students who need support today at Gunn High School.

You may also reach out to offices at our other school sites should you have concerns specific to children attending them.

I have attached the press release from PAPD regarding the incident. We extend a sincere thank you to all of PAPD and our School Resource Officers for their fast actions.


Don Austin

PAPD Press Release (PDF)