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The Times
  • Classes resumed at Herkimer BOCES Thursday afternoon

  • With the standoff involving shooting suspect Kurt Myers over, Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES opened for classes Thursday afternoon.

    Earlier Thursday morning, Herkimer BOCES was closed to students.

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  • With the standoff involving shooting suspect Kurt Myers over, Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES opened for classes Thursday afternoon.
    Earlier Thursday morning, Herkimer BOCES was closed to students.
    The Herkimer and Mohawk school districts closed for the whole day Thursday, and all other Herkimer BOCES component districts opened for the day.
    Wednesday, students in the Herkimer BOCES region were successfully transported from school after the fatal shootings that took place in Herkimer and Mohawk.
    Through close communication among state police, local law enforcement officials, Herkimer BOCES and the 12 Herkimer BOCES component districts, changes to normal dismissal were made where necessary.
    Herkimer BOCES District Superintendent Mark Vivacqua said he appreciated the helpful communication from law enforcement and thanked the administration, faculty and staff at Herkimer BOCES and the component districts for properly handling a difficult situation. “Everything went according to plan, and our students are safe,” Vivacqua said. “Our thoughts are now with the families of the victims.”
    Students in various school districts in the area are related to victims in the shootings or were otherwise impacted by the tragedy, Vivacqua said.
    Herkimer BOCES crisis teams are meeting to assess the level of support needed — such as the availability of counselors for students.
    Shortly after news broke Wednesday morning about the shootings in the communities of Herkimer and Mohawk, Herkimer BOCES and multiple schools in the area were placed under lockdown. Classes continued to take place within the schools.
    Herkimer BOCES and other area school district administrators were in regular contact with the police command center and organized a plan for dismissal of students that evolved throughout the day. Herkimer BOCES officials also kept in contact with the 12 component districts to update them on their options for dismissal.
    Dolgeville, Oppenheim-Ephratah, Frankfort-Schuyler, Owen D. Young, Richfield Springs, Mount Markham, Poland and West Canada Valley ended up having normal dismissal Wednesday.
    Ilion altered its dismissal plan and had a successful late release of students. Little Falls released rural students on buses as usual, but required city students who ride a bus or walk to be signed out by parents.
    Herkimer and Mohawk students were held in school past standard dismissal, but were eventually released in the early evening. Arrangements were made for some Herkimer students who live in a cordoned off area surrounding the standoff with the suspected shooter in Herkimer to go elsewhere.

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