Even with San Ramon Valley schools now on Thanksgiving break, the recent string of racially charged and hurtful graffiti continues.
Monte Vista High School officials announced Monday that racist and homophobic graffiti was found over the weekend on a TRAFFIX bus that serves the northeast Danville campus.
That marks two racist graffiti incidents related to Monte Vista in the past week, and the sixth such incident in district high schools in just over a month.
"The consequences for students responsible for these actions are severe," Monte Vista principal Kevin Ahern said in an email to the school community Monday afternoon.
"Consequences for engaging in behavior that infringes on the rights of other students, including, but not limited to hate speech or violence may, carry severe consequences including suspension and possibly expulsion from the SRVUSD," he added.
Ahern's three-paragraph message also reflected on the all-school assembly last Thursday that took place the day after racist graffiti was found in a boys' bathroom on campus.
Monte Vista teachers talked about their personal experiences with discrimination and 100 students got up to speak as well during the assembly.
"As we saw last week from the incredible outpouring of support from our students, staff and parents, we are a unified school community that stands against hate speech and all forms of harassment and intimidation," Ahern said. "We heard loud and clear from Monte Vista's students, faculty and community that they do not want their school to be defined by these incidents."
Police and school officials continue to investigate the incident that occurred on the Monte Vista campus last Wednesday, with results still pending, according to school district spokeswoman Elizabeth Graswich.
Ahern said Danville police have started their investigation into the school bus graffiti, and school officials will begin their inquiry when Monte Vista reopens next Monday. Local schools are closed all week for the Thanksgiving break.
"At this time, we are still investigating details of the incident and examining leads. Because this is an active investigation, we cannot release the specifics of the incident at this time," the principal said.
Ahern reiterated that incidents of hate speech and violence are referred to law enforcement for potential criminal charges where appropriate, and he encouraged students with information on both Monte Vista incidents to step forward and speak out.
"If students are aware of others thinking about engaging in negative behavior, they should discourage the action and report it to any staff member," he said. "The overwhelming majority of our students will make the right decision because it is the right thing to do."
"We will continue to work with our staff, local law enforcement and SRVUSD administration to ensure a safe environment for all our students, Ahern added.
For San Ramon Valley schools, the bus vandalism marked the fourth racist graffiti incident in less than a week.
Racist graffiti was found in bathrooms at San Ramon's California High School on Thursday and Friday, prompting school officials and about 100 parents to meet and discuss the situations Friday evening.
Cal High faced two other racist graffiti incidents late last month, both involving slurs targeting African-Americans written on bathroom walls -- one in a boys' restroom Oct. 19 and the other in a girls' restroom Oct. 24.
A Cal High student admitted responsibility for the first incident, while the investigations into the other five incidents in the district remain ongoing, Graswich said.