Mater Dei campus to reopen Thursday after threat closed school

An Orange County high school campus reopens Thursday after a "credible threat" to safety. It’s one of many recent problems at local schools.  

Santa Ana police say the threat appears to be made by a former Mater Dei High School employee, but investigators didn’t disclose details. 

"It’s a parent’s worst nightmare any day, especially given what’s been happening the last few weeks at schools around the country," says Mater Dei Mom Dr. Kim Thompson. Her freshman son and his classmates spent Wednesday, one of the last days of the school year back where they started, on Zoom.  

"Everybody was forced to go into the gym," says her son, Jonathan. 

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: 'Credible threat' forces closure of Mater Dei High School through Friday

Students and teachers locked themselves in the gymnasium for a half-hour Tuesday afternoon, when the threat came in. 

"Of course, your heart sinks," says Dr. Thomson. "First thing I did was call him and I just kept thinking, ‘answer the phone, answer the phone,’ and as soon as I heard his voice my heart was so happy to hear he was ok." 

Detectives say there is no longer a threat at school. Campus reopens Thursday but students return to class Monday for final exams. 


"The world is just crazy," says Dr. Thompson. "We just keep thinking it’s getting as crazy as it’s going to be and then more stuff happens. It’s a rough world for these kids to grow up in and it’s rough for parents as well. Sending your kids to school should not be something that is filled with fear."