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Superintendents around region react to closure decision across NYS

Penn Yan Superintendent Howard Dennis said he felt disappointed about the situation, but that ultimately – it was unavoidable.

“It’s disappointing, it’s frustrating, but I think everyone understands it,” Howard said to Finger Lakes News Radio. “And now we just need to put a plan together to wrap the year up.”

Speaking to the frustration that some students expressed on social media after the announcement, he reassured them that it’s perfectly fine to feel frustrated with the circumstances. “Reach out to us,” Dennis continued. “We’d be happy to talk with you about [those feelings].”

Dundee Superintendent Kelly Houck told Finger Lakes News Radio that at the end of the day – it’s about academics and keeping students safe. The focus now for their district will be keeping students educated throughout these unusual circumstances.

“We had three plans in the district,” she said. “The realization we weren’t coming back was pretty evident,” she explained. Especially as the return delays continued. While they would have prepared and dealt with returning – it wasn’t something that was possible at the end of the day.

At least not according to Governor Cuomo, who said Friday districts would need to come up with strategies for reopening in the fall.

Meanwhile, Canandaigua Superintendent Jamie Farr said he was gutted by the decision to shut down for the year. “Saying that I feel gutted is an understatement,” he shared. “I am sorry to all who share this disappointment with me.”

Most districts are planning varying sorts of celebrations for seniors. Districts have been telling parents and students to watch for communications in the coming days and weeks.