Sacred Heart Prep students expelled for 'marijuana-related activities,' official says

Two students have been expelled from Sacred Heart Preparatory in Atherton for "marijuana-related activities," a school official said in a statement released Friday (Oct. 30).

Atherton police Sgt. Kristin Nichols said Friday she's been fielding calls from the community asking about an alleged drug bust, but that she had no information about it.

When she contacted school officials Friday morning, she was told that there was no drug incident there, she told The Almanac.

Then, shortly after noon on Friday, Sacred Heart released a statement by Richard Dioli, director of schools at Sacred Heart, a private Catholic school.

"We conducted our own internal investigation and have asked these individuals to leave our school; they are no longer students at Sacred Heart Preparatory," Mr. Dioli said in the statement. "The Atherton police department is not involved in any kind of formal investigation on our campus."


Posted by Sacred Heart Student, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Oct 30, 2009 at 2:16 pm


Posted by Concerned, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Oct 30, 2009 at 2:48 pm

I would like to know the details from somebody who really knows what happened and how widely spread the problem was, if there was actually a wide spread problem. Please provide accurate and full information.

Posted by anonymous, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 30, 2009 at 4:13 pm

i agree: COVER UP

Posted by anonymous, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Oct 30, 2009 at 10:03 pm

this is a cover up for sure

Posted by Please tell, a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda
on Oct 30, 2009 at 10:05 pm

Would any of you people who imply you know something care to share? It seems the Almanac is being stonewalled by the school. What can you people "in the know" tell us that the school won't?

Posted by Anon, a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Oct 31, 2009 at 7:43 am

What convinces any of you that there is a cover-up? What do you believe happened?

Posted by Parent, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Oct 31, 2009 at 9:33 am

If you don't have children at the school, why do you even care? Parents and students at SHP were informed of the incident and appropriate action was taken to remove the students involved.

Has it ever occurred to anyone that the students involved are minors and because of that fact there will not be a great deal of information released? I am sure that if the Atherton Police had information that was important for the community to know, they would make sure that it was distributed.

Otherwise, I don't understand what the big deal is.

Posted by Big Al, a resident of another community
on Oct 31, 2009 at 9:41 am

Much ado about nothing

Posted by Menlo student, a resident of Atherton: other
on Oct 31, 2009 at 1:42 pm

This is a total cover up. And while I've heard about 7 or 8 different versions of the story, here is the most popular one. A junior who will remain unnamed tried to deal marijuana to freshman earlier this week. After the freshman told school officials, the school declared the right to search his car where they found large quantities of ecstasy and cocaine. With this in mind, someone (rumored it was the DEA, possibly just the kid's parents), searched his room where they found (again the most popular figures) $65,000 in cocaine and more than $100,000 in cash. Another story claimed that the cash was placed in a P.O. box, which all but validates the claim that the DEA was involved. There were also rumors that crystal meth was found.

Posted by Dean, a resident of Atherton: other
on Oct 31, 2009 at 2:24 pm

The Atherton police have been covering up for wealthy peoples kids forever--it is actually the secret reason for thier "popularity" that no one likes to admit.

Posted by Parent, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Oct 31, 2009 at 2:46 pm

Wealthy kids were not involved. The junior mentioned above was from RWC. At least two other students were scholarship kids from EPA.

Posted by Dean, a resident of Atherton: other
on Oct 31, 2009 at 4:19 pm

Of coarse they are the only ones--Thats is beause the wealthy one's parents have standing agreement with the police. The 17yr old selling on our street had a beuatiful BMW-the police were not interested in his lics plate number and only ran off his customers.
It is true I know nothing of this particular case, only alot of old examples.

Posted by Hmmm, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Nov 1, 2009 at 12:04 am

I'm not so sure Atherton police give preferential treatment to all wealthy people. Perhaps the wealthy people who donate police dogs, etc., but I think there may be actual resentment for other wealthy individuals. Anyway, isn't everyone in Atherton wealthy by any reasonable definition?

Posted by Rose, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 1, 2009 at 11:44 am

I think it is great that the school has a no tolerance policy and that THEY were able to catch the dealer themselves. We need to pray for all the families involved and for other schools in the area to crack down the way Sacred Heart did.

Posted by Marie, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Nov 1, 2009 at 11:47 am

Hi Dan Believe me I know some wealthy people whose kids have really gotten in trouble by the police for much lesser crimes Don't think their money could help them.

Posted by Learned it on the streets, a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Nov 1, 2009 at 12:00 pm

If you've had the misfortune to date gold diggers (and if you have money, are single, and live in this area, I think you have), note the sophisticated ones don't really care how much you have. It's all about what you're willing to give to them. My guess is that precept may play out in other walks of life.

Posted by concerned citizen, a resident of another community
on Nov 1, 2009 at 10:15 pm

This is a true cover up story by SHP. How bad would it look for the school when all of these parents find out that their school has a serious drug problem that will not stop because these kids can afford to mess around with these drugs? Sacred Heart is known as the stoner school on Valparaiso compared to Menlo across the street, and if all the details of the drug bust are released in the media, it will hurt the positive progress the school has made lately. Almost $200,000 worth of drugs and cash just on this one kid...imagine what you can find on the rest of the student body.

Posted by Look inward, a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Nov 2, 2009 at 9:12 am

I commend SHP for the way this was handled. If we all stop pointing fingers and gossiping, and instead looked inward at ourselves and our own children it would be the best solution to this issue. It is not the school, the money, the area, it is about being honest with yourself and others. The drug problem is everywhere and at every school across the country and around the world. Good for SHP for dealing with it in the manner they did. They took ACTION. I am hoping that other schools follow their example of how this was handled.

Posted by Atherton Neighbor, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 2, 2009 at 11:12 am

I've been watching these posts all weekend and finally had to jump in.

I'm not sure how anyone can claim that Sacred Heart is involved in a cover-up, when the entire faculty and student body was informed of the situation and a letter went out to all Sacred Heart Families. That means that close to 1500 people were notified - not exactly a cover-up.

As one of the previous posters noted, the students involved are minors - as a result neither the school nor anyone else is at liberty to provide all of the details of the situation.

Sacred Heart has expelled students for lesser offenses in the past and as a member of the local community, I hope they continue to have a zero-tolerance policy toward this type of behavior.

Posted by maybe, a resident of Atherton: other
on Nov 2, 2009 at 1:05 pm

not sure but I assumed the "cover up' stuff was directed more towards the poliice--the school being protective would be instinctive.

Posted by Richard Hine, managing editor of The Almanac
on Nov 3, 2009 at 11:39 am

Richard Hine is a registered user.

I'm closing this thread. Check the latest version of the story.

Web Link

If you were a member and logged in you could track comments from this story.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Universal Language
By Cheryl Bac | 4 comments | 1,481 views

On Tour at Selective Schools: Chapman, La Verne, Redlands, Whittier
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 0 comments | 1,440 views

The dress code
By Jessica T | 13 comments | 1,241 views

Anglo Menlo Park
By Paul Bendix | 0 comments | 489 views

Council election, and then some.
By Stuart Soffer | 1 comment | 244 views