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What you need to know for 10/22/2017

District’s Raucci probe not finished

District’s Raucci probe not finished

The city school district’s investigation into Steven Raucci’s alleged misconduct isn’t over yet, acc

The city school district’s investigation into Steven Raucci’s alleged misconduct isn’t over yet, according to the school board president.

Although school board members met behind closed doors Thursday with binders labeled, “June 15 2009 Independent Investigation and Recommendations,” board President Jeff Janiszewski said Friday that the contents were nothing of the sort.

“The investigative process is not finished yet,” he said.

The binders contained recommendations regarding a personnel matter, he said.

“The board met in executive session to do personnel evaluations,” he said. “We did get an update germane to our deliberations, as it pertained to evaluations.”

The board spent hours meeting secretly on the matter. As late as 10:30 p.m. Thursday, they were still talking behind closed doors.

The Daily Gazette has requested a copy of the report under the Freedom of Information Act.

The investigation began in April, when the board hired Rachel Rissetto, the human resources director for the Clinton Essex Warren Washington BOCES. She is being paid $100 an hour to investigate allegations that Raucci mistreated district employees.

Workers have said that he sexually harassed them, telling one woman that she must dress to please him or lose her job and playing what he called a “man game” in which he ran his hand up men’s legs to grab at their crotches.

Workers have also said that when they complained about their treatment, he vandalized their cars and occasionally placed small bombs outside vehicles and house doors. No one was injured.

Raucci is in jail, facing a host of criminal charges including terrorism and arson. According to prosecutors, the incidents relate to years of intimidation of school district employees and union members.

Rissetto was specifically told not to investigate any of the criminal allegations. She was directed to investigate allegations of workplace misconduct as well as determine whether Raucci’s supervisors knew about his behavior. Schenectady County District Attorney Robert Carney has alleged that some school officials were “beholden” to Raucci.

The board said it chose Rissetto partly because she had no ties to any school officials and would thus feel free to report honestly about any connections they had to Raucci.

However, critics quickly learned that she has ties to school district attorney Shari Greenleaf.

The two work for the New York State Association of Management Advocates for School Labor Affairs. Greenleaf is the president of the board, and Rissetto is the eastern region director.

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