Mary Kate Szokoli, a first grade teacher at in Elwood, died early Friday morning, according to school officials. Details surrounding the circumstances of her death have not yet been released.
Szokoli is a graduate of and began her career at Harley Primary, where she has taught for the past nine years.
"The Elwood Board of Education and administration wish to extend our prayers and deepest condolences to her family and friends during this difficult time," Elwood Superintendent Peter Scordo said in a statement this afternoon. "Mrs. Szokoli was a warm, caring, and highly regarded member of the Elwood family and she will be deeply missed."
Members of the district’s mental health and guidance team are on-site at Harley
Avenue to meet with students and staff as needed. Ongoing counseling will also be made available. The district is communicating with parents who have children in Szokoli’s class to encourage them to talk with their children about how they are feeling.
Any parent who has questions or concerns, can contact the main office for
assistance. A substitute teacher has been assigned to take over her teaching duties until a more permanent solution is made.
A wake will be held at on Monday night from 7-9 p.m. and on Tuesday from 2-5 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. The funeral is on Wednesday at 10 at St. Francis in Greenlawn.
Patch will provide further detail on this story as it becomes available.