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No-snow-day question gets a heated answer

A student who called a school official's home to ask why the snow hadn't closed schools got a frosty response — and created an online storm.
/ Source: The Associated Press

A student who called a school official's home to ask why the snow hadn't closed schools got a heated response — and created an online storm.

Last Thursday, the student, Devraj "Dave" S. Kori, 17, called the listed home phone number for Dean Tistadt, chief operating officer of Fairfax County, Va., schools, and asked why he hadn't closed schools after an estimated 3 inches of snow fell.

Kori left his name and number, and Tistadt's wife returned the call. She apparently wasn't pleased, judging by her taped message, which Kori posted on a Facebook page.

"How dare you call us at home! If you have a problem with going to school, you do not call somebody's house and complain about it," Candy Tistadt snapped in her message. She also used the phrase "snotty-nosed little brats," and said, "Get over it, kid, and go to school!"

The message was also posted on YouTube. Kori, who attends Lake Braddock Secondary School, did not immediately respond to an e-mail Wednesday.

He told The Washington Post that he thought he had a right to ask a public official for more information about a decision that affected him and other students. He also said his generation viewed privacy differently.

But Fairfax County schools spokesman Paul Regnier told the newspaper that Kori's action showed a gap in civility.

"It's really an issue of kids learning what is acceptable and not acceptable. Any call to a public servant's house is harassment," Regnier said.

Kori told the newspaper he was called into the principal's office to discuss the situation, though he was not punished.

Dean Tistadt told the Post that the incident has been "horrible" for his wife, but he said Kori had courage to stand up for his convictions.