El Dorado Hills Teacher’s Post about Student’s Threat Goes Viral

EL DORADO HILLS -- An El Dorado Hills teacher's post about threats from a student has gone viral.

"I want to beat her up."

"I'm going to f'ing kill her."

"I'm going to shoot her and the whole school."

Those are threats made by an Oak Ridge High School student against one of his teachers and his entire El Dorado Hills campus last fall.

"That day was horrific. The deputies had to call and tell me exactly word for word..what had been said. Hearing that someone wants to hurt you is unnerving to say the least," Colleen Sanders remembered with tears streaming down her face.

That's the mind space she's been in since November, when one of her A.P. Statistics students was arrested for making deadly threats - threats heard by and reported anonymously by fellow students and their parents.

"The administration did a fantastic job the day of when threats were turned in. They took them seriously," she said.

Public details are few about what happened since the perpetrator is a minor, but according to Sanders the district's initial action led to the student-athlete being held for four weeks, pleading guilty to two criminal charges and now being monitored by an ankle bracelet while on house arrest.

Though the boy is no longer an Oak Ridge student, isn't allowed on any El Dorado Union High School District campuses or at any district events he is at a continuation school and has not been expelled.

The district administrative panel hearing his case heard that he brought a pellet gun to school in his car and was showing it off to other students as a real gun.

They also heard that he made comments like 'the Las Vegas shooter did it right.'

Still, they decided against expulsion - the kind of action that could put a red flag in his file that colleges could see.

It's left Sanders with a lot of fear and a lot of questions.

"Why they wouldn't choose to side with their teachers and the rest of the students in the district," she's asked.

Via statement, district leaders say the evidence in any case like this is "tested against the standards for student discipline set forth in California education code and EDUHSD policies."

The decision against expulsion came the day after 17 people were gunned down at a high school in Parkland, Florida by a former student who'd made numerous violent threats.

Colleen Sanders says people everywhere have to look past what they want to think of their neighborhoods and face reality.

"Law enforcement has done a good job in stopping a lot of these incidents from happening. That doesn't mean that they're not happening," she said.

"It's happening. It's happening here. It's happening a lot more frequently than people know."

Since sharing some of her frustrations on Facebook, Sanders has heard from dozens of other teachers who say they've experienced similar situations with less support and follow-up.

When it comes to the school budget concerns that may keep security fences from being built somewhere or security staff from being hired, Sanders says, "it has to be a priority first of all that we don't want anymore innocent lives to be taken and so therefore...we're going to do this."

So what's the 'this?'

It could be something different in every different community.

Oak Ridge staff just had a meeting today discussing ways to secure their very open campus and make everyone on there feel safe.

Sanders has been off campus since the shooting in Parkland.

She says that tragedy brought back all the initial fear and stress she and her family endured when they first learned of the threats against her and her campus.