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Need Counseling Help?

As we hold school remotely due to the Coronavirus, we wanted to reassure you that our guidance department will continue to be available to you and your students during these unprecedented times. 

For Elementary students: Our counseling staff is available from 8:00-4:00 every school day.  They can be reached anytime at escounseling@southseneca.org. They will have direct calls forwarded to them during the following hours, but will check voicemail remotely. Elementary Counseling Staff office hours: Mr. Bakers 8:00-11:00, Mrs. Wright 10:30-1:30pm & Mr. Schank 1:00-4:00pm. 



For Middle & High School students: While email remains our preferred method of communication students & parents are encouraged to stay in touch with us through The Remind App which can be downloaded on a phone or accessed on a computer free of charge. We are hoping to use this app whenever possible to discuss any questions/concerns that come up just as if we were in school. Students & parents can also request a video chat session via email or the remind me app. You can also speak with our counseling staff by calling the school and dialing one of our work extensions during school hours.
 
Our Middle/High School Social Worker Brooke Habberfield will also be available to students by email or through The Remind Me App @bhabberf. Nicole Paonessa will continue to meet with students K-12 via telephone or Zoom Video chat for ongoing counseling. She can be reached by email at or by text/call at (315) 651-5556. 
 
If you would like to speak to a counselor and it can wait, please email counseling@southseneca.org. If you need to speak with someone immediately, Call 869-9636, ext. 3101. This goes to Mr. Houseknecht’s cell phone, Mr. Houseknecht can get you the help you need. 
 
While school is not in session, if you or someone you care about is feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression or anxiety or feel as if they want to harm themselves or others, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline which provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in crisis. They can be reached by dialing 1-800-273-8255. Or you can contact the Crisis Text Line which is also a free, 24/7, confidential service for those in distress. Just text HOME to 741741. 
 
We are dedicated to maintaining our strong relationships with not only our students but also our families. Please take note of the email address, extensions and the Remind Me App codes below our names where you can reach out to us directly regarding any specific concerns you may have. Thank you for your patience and understanding during these uncertain times.


Elementary School 
 
Name  Title  Email  Phone Ext. 

Tyler Baker

Elementary School Counselor 

tbaker@southseneca.org 

x4160

Dan Schanck

School Psychologist 

dschanck@southseneca.org
 

x4140

Amber Wright

Elementary School Social Worker

awright@southseneca.org 

x4222

Nicole Paonessa

Seneca County Community Counseling Therapist  

npaonessa@southseneca.org
 

(315) 651-5556
 

Middle & High School 
 
Name  Title  Email  Phone Ext.  Remind App 

Melissa Parish 

Guidance Secretary 

mparish@southseneca.org
 

x4145

N/A

Alyssandra Orfano

Middle School Counselor 

aorfano@southseneca.org
 

x4127

@msorfano

Sean Green

High School Counselor

sgreen@southseneca.org
 

x4101

@hsgreen

Michelle Cardoso 

School Psychologist 

mcardoso@southseneca.org
 

N/A

@9bk343

Brooke Habberfield

Middle/High Social Worker
bhabberfield@southseneca.org  N/A @bhabberf
Nicole Paonessa  Seneca County Community
Counseling Therapist 
npaonessa@southseneca.org  (315) 651-5556   N/A

Kim Zajac

Substance Abuse Counselor

kzajac@southseneca.org
 

N/A
 
N/A
 

Talking with children about COVID-19 
As public conversations around coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) increase, children may worry about themselves, their family, and friends getting ill with COVID-19. Parents, family members, school staff, and other trusted adults can play an important role in helping children make sense of what they hear in a way that is honest, accurate, and minimizes anxiety or fear. CDC has created guidance to help adults have conversations with children about COVID-19 and ways they can avoid getting and spreading the disease. (cdc.org) 
 
General principles for talking to children about COVID-19: 
Remain calm and reassuring 
Make yourself available to listen and to talk 
Avoid language that might blame others and lead to stigma 
Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio, or online 
Provide information that is honest and accurate 
Teach children everyday actions to reduce the spread of germs