Keep Westword Free

Andrea Merida happy her DPS board colleague Jeannie Kaplan "vindicated" by e-mails

SquareState.net has published a chain of e-mails between former DPS superintendent-turned-Senator Michael Bennet, current Denver Public Schools superintendent Tom Boasberg and board members Jeannie Kaplan and Teresa Pena about the DPS pension financing deal that made headlines in the New York Times last week.

While the e-mails can be a bit hard to follow for non-banking whizzes, the comments posted by readers are interesting -- especially those by controversial board member Andrea Merida.

The e-mails show what anyone following the situation already knows -- that Kaplan had asked repeatedly for an update on the deal for more than two years. In the comment section, Merida applauds SquareState's publishing of the evidence.

I'm glad my colleague, Jeannie Kaplan, is being vindicated here. She did the right thing by asking for a periodic update on the financial status of these pension transactions. We have been pushing for disclosure, but the other side does everything possible to keep from discussing details.

The "other side" comment is evidence of the deep division on the board -- a rift the district tried to heal early on with at least one therapy session. (Read Education News Colorado's coverage of that session here.)

I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Another comment posted by Merida references a more recent flap regarding Merida's failure to disclose her paid position as a staffer for Democratic Senate candidate Andrew Romanoff while at the same time criticizing Pena's connection to the Bennet campaign.

My failure to disclose myself as a Romanoff staffer when I was addressing an issue in my capacity as a board member was blown out of proportion in retaliation for our pressure.

That's how they roll.

Now, Merida is trying to preempt any fallout from the discovery that she worked this past legislative session as an aide to Representative Mark Ferrandino, who is calling for an audit of DPS's "pension-related issues." On her website yesterday, Merida said she no longer works for him -- but looks forward to the outcome of the audit.

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.