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School district ready for new year with better communication, improved website

— The Skaneateles Central School District is ready for the start of the 2012-13 school year with plans for better communication with parents and the community, an improved website and web presence, completed improvements on the school buildings and grounds and a plan of specific action for beginning the search for a new district superintendent.

Interim District Superintendent Judy Pastel began the board of education’s Aug. 21 meeting with news that the district’s website is being vastly improved to offer more and better information and communication with parents and community members.

“I believe every district can do better with communication,” Pastel told the Skaneateles Press. “I really want the website to be a place where people go to find out what’s happening, see student work, hear from students and have a vibrant window into the district.”

The first stages of the improved web presence already have begun with posted videos of Pastel giving a welcome message to the district, video of the class of 2012 jumping into Skaneateles Lake at the conclusion of this year’s graduation ceremonies and a welcome message from Waterman Elementary School Principal Gary Gerst for the 2012-13 school year.

Gerst’s video is only the first in a line of planned videos from all four school principals, district administrators and board of education members, all of whom will talk about specific issues, goals and information as an introduction to the opening of the new school year. Eventually, student work, events and interviews will be posted as well.

“We’re really excited about this,” Pastel said.

She added that she loved the video of the graduation lake jump, which she called “an incredible tradition,” and said that she is working with district administration to create an academic challenge for “all students” for the upcoming year that, if completed, will oblige her to jump in the lake with next year’s graduates.

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