Dolores school dispute escalates into email clash

Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016 5:20 PM
The Journal

An email from a former Dolores High School student sent ripples throughout Dolores Schools on Sunday.

A flap over electronic equipment owned by a former student at Dolores Schools was laid bare in an email chain distributed to parents this week.

Last school year, the technically savvy student was tasked by school administrators to be the sound engineer for events and to help maintain the school’s electronic message board.

The student used his own sound equipment for events and his laptop computer for the message board.

The student has since transferred to another school. But when he recently attempted to retrieve his laptop, he was initially rebuffed by Dolores School officials, he said.

Then while at a recent football game in Dolores, the student saw his amplifier and retrieved it. A school administrator suspected theft and contacted the Montezuma County Sheriff’s Office.

According to a sheriff deputy’s report, an investigation revealed that the equipment and computer were indeed the student’s. His property was returned, and there were no charges.

School officials, who have come to depend on some of the student’s sound equipment, asked if they could purchase it at a cost of about $1,000, and the student agreed, his father told The Journal.

“It all worked out fine, but better communication by school administrators at the beginning would have been helpful,” he said.

Due to an apparent email glitch, the student began receiving emails from the Dolores school on his old student account. He wrote an email critical of the school’s handling of the situation, and it was sent out Sunday to the schools’ email tree.

Upon retrieval of his laptop, according to the student’s email, he claimed programs he owned had been removed from the computer.

In an email sent to parents and teachers, Dolores Schools Superintendent Scott Cooper said that he was “researching the defamation statements” in the student’s emails and that the student’s school email account has been disabled. Cooper also stated that the school was disabling the email accounts of all other former students.