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Thursday Churn: Greeley censure

UpdatedGreeley school board members voted this morning to censure fellow board member Brett Reese, following allegations that Reese inappropriately touched a teacher and appeared intoxicated at a board meeting – allegations that Reese denies.

Reese didn’t attend this morning’s meeting. The censure resolution reads, in part, “Mr. Reese’s behavior since his election to the board is contrary to the standards of conduct adopted by this board, detrimental to the work of the board and the educational mission of the district, a violation of his oath of office to faithfully perform the duties of the office of school director and a violation of the public trust.”

See coverage at 9News and the Greeley Tribune.

What’s churning:

Douglas County school district leaders say a planned protest this morning at the Ponderosa High School graduation ceremony has been “canceled by the group due to travel complications.”

Members of the Westboro Baptist Church in Kansas continued late Wednesday to list the event on the “picket schedule” on their website, describing its goal as “to tell the graduates the truth for once.”

The picket was in response to a letter to the Denver Post written by a Ponderosa senior, graduating today, who questioned the U.S. Supreme Court decision protecting the church’s right to protest at soldiers’ funerals.

Douglas County officials posted a brief message about the protest cancellation on their website Wednesday. It came a few hours after the district issued guidelines to the media about covering the event, such as requiring reporters to have escorts on district property.

While in town, church members also planned to protest the University of Denver Hillel Center and the Denver Islamic Society. No word on those demonstrations.

Douglas County also is making news after a group of fourth-graders from the district’s Wildcat Mountain Elementary turned up at a press conference Monday with state Sen. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, who discussed his plan to seek a tax increase for education this fall.

Kelly Maher at whosaidyousaid.com had the scoop:

What’s on tap:

In Greeley, school board member Brett Reese denied allegations that he inappropriately touched a teacher and showed up drunk at a board meeting. He read a statement aloud and then left a specially scheduled meeting Wednesday, departing before discussions with other board members. So they scheduled another meeting at 8 a.m. today to talk about a possible censure. Catch up on the recent flurry of activity – the latest in Reese’s controversial tenure – with this Greeley Tribune article.

The Denver school board convenes a regular meeting starting at 2 p.m. at 900 Grant St., followed by a public comment session at 4:30 p.m. That’s early to allow board members to attend graduation activities. The agenda includes three more Innovation School applications, up for board approval.

Good reads from elsewhere:

Degreed and jobless: Employment rates for new college graduates have fallen sharply in the last two years, as have starting salaries for those who can find work. New York Times.

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