Saratoga County

Shenendehowa seeks to improve communications with public

Shenendehowa has launched a Web site and after hours telephone service that school officials hope wi

Shenendehowa has launched a Web site and after hours telephone service that school officials hope will ease communication between the district and the public.

The blog is called “Heard It Through The Grapevine,” and district spokeswoman Kelly DeFeciani said it was launched Friday to help answer common questions that officials receive and address rumors that circulate in the district.

Shenendehowa communications

The Shenedehowa Central School District blog “Heard It Through The Grapevine” can be found at The after hours phone number for the district is 518-371-4004.

“Although we’re a big district, the grapevine is pretty small here,” she said. “We thought this would be a good place to kind of answer questions that come up pretty consistently.”

One of the questions DeFeciani answered recently on the blog related to Christopher Culver, the former Okte Elementary School teacher who pleaded guilty in November to molesting eight boys in his class. She explained that Culver had to be placed on paid leave under state law and that he was placed on suspension without pay following his guilty plea.

Other questions and answers related to senior privileges at the high school and snow days.

“There’s a lot of people who have the questions but just don’t ask them,” DeFeciani said. “This will also just help provide information to people in general.”

The after hours phone number was created so parents and students can contact the district when the school is closed.

DeFeciani cited an incident last year when a bus was late to a field trip and parents had no way of notifying the district since the school was closed at the time.

Now callers can leave a message at the number and campus security will direct it to the proper school official.

“There was another incident where people had heard about a rumor and wanted answers,” DeFeciani said. “We realized when these things come up there’s really nowhere to get in touch with someone.”

Officials cautioned that the number should not be used instead of 911 in emergencies.

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