Message from Principal Makela Regarding the Lockdown this Morning

Madera Families,

By now you’ve likely heard that we had a lockdown this morning. The El Cerrito Police Department pursued and apprehended three burglary suspects in the neighborhood behind our school.  The police department communicated quickly with us so that we could take the necessary precautions to keep the children safe.   Our school was completely locked down in seconds, even with needing to bring in some students from the yard.  As a result, at no time were we in any real danger and no one entered our campus.

I’m incredibly proud of the way in which our entire staff and parent volunteers handled the situation.  We are trained to deal with such contingencies but it’s noteworthy that they conveyed a sense of calm throughout the approximately 30 minutes that we waited in classrooms. After the lockdown, I visited each primary classroom, processing the events of the morning and reassuring the children that they were safe.

We received commendations from officers for our response and look to this as an opportunity to find ways to further improve our plan for ensuring the safety of our kids. My sincere thanks to the El Cerrito Police Department; we appreciate their obvious commitment to keeping our kids safe.

Please let me know if you have further questions.



  1. My first grader related this story to me, with no fear, only as an exciting tale in the life of a first grader! Thank you all for handling it so well, keeping everyone safe and calm and reassured.

  2. Thanks to the El Cerrito police, Madera teachers and all the staffs. Although, I agree with the previous comment. As we have learned in the past, not all situations come with a warning. To me, it would make more sense if all the gates are closed during school hours.

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