CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. -- New Castle Police have opened an investigation relating to Horace Greeley High School drama teacher Christopher Schraufnagel's interactions with students, according to multiple reports.
Daily Voice first reported on Thursday that Schraufnagel started a paid leave of absence, unanimously approved by the school board, coming just days before graduation.
The Journal News attributed confirmation of the investigation to New Castle Police Det./Sgt. James Wilson (who did not specifically name Schraufnagel) and a statement from the Chappaqua school district.
Daily Voice reached out to Wilson for comment earlier this week to find out whether an investigation is taking place. At the time, he said that no arrests of staff members from the high school had been made. However, he added that he would not confirm or deny there being an investigation.
Wilson could not be reached for comment on Friday afternoon.
The Journal News reports that it got in touch with Schraufnagel but that he declined to comment other than to confirm his leave of absence.
In a Friday afternoon email to parents, a copy of which was obtained by Daily Voice, Chappaqua Schools Superintendent Lyn McKay wrote in general terms about the school's theater program. However, she alluded to law enforcement playing a role in the matter.
"While I cannot answer questions or be specific, rest assured we are doing everything that is necessary and are cooperating with the authorities."
McKay did not mention Schraufnagel in the email, either by name or implicitly.
Schraufnagel's leave of absence is retroactive to Monday, June 15.
Schraufnagel, known in the community as "Schrauf," was hired by the district in 2003 and received tenure in 2006, school board minutes show.
McKay acknowledged rumors pertaining to the theater program in Daily Voice's story on Thursday, although she has declined to provide details and has cited privacy as a priority.
McKay addressed the issue again in the afternoon email to parents.
In the email, McKay acknowledged that there has been media coverage pertaining to Greeley's theater program.
"First and foremost, our students' well-being is our No. 1 priority and we take privacy, especially when it comes to students, seriously."
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