Montezuma-Cortez Re-1 Superintendent Alex Carter responded to a media request on Wednesday with an email to a Boulder lawyer in which he called a reporter a “cancer.”
“I have a really horrible reporter in Cortez,” Carter wrote via email on Wednesday. “He is a cancer to this district.”
The remarks were included in an email from Carter to school district lawyer Kristin Edgar on Wednesday, Dec. 9. Carter had sought Edgar’s advice on how to respond to this reporter’s request about an executive session held the previous night.
On Tuesday, the Re-1 school board met in executive session to discuss a personnel matter before a contentious public meeting that evening. A standing room only crowd gathered at the open meeting, which was officiated by board president Jack Schuenemeyer. Some two dozen parents and students addressed the school board during a public comment period lamenting the termination of four high school coaches this semester. Despite requests, the terminations weren’t included as an agenda item at the board’s regular meeting.
This reporter’s email, sent just before 11 a.m. Wednesday, asked Carter, in part, to identify when the school board’s executive session was publicly announced, list those in attendance at the closed meeting and reveal any formal decision made behind closed doors.
Copying Schuenemeyer in his email, Carter forwarded that request to Edgar, asking how he should respond. The remarks about this reporter were contained in Carter’s opening sentence to Edgar.
Copying Schuenemeyer again, Carter included his email to Edgar in his official response to this reporter. About a half-hour later, Carter sent another email to the journalist.
“I apologize for what I said in the message, and I want you to know that there is no excuse for it,” Carter wrote.
Although the newspaper did not receive notice of the closed meeting, Carter said the public was notified on Monday.
“The board cannot and did not take action during the executive session,” Carter said.
Colorado law requires an audio recording of any executive session by a school board be kept on file for 90 days. Carter declined to make a recording of Tuesday’s closed meeting available to the public.