By Danielle Chavira

DENVER (CBS4) – Denver Public Schools says it is aware of a federal lawsuit which names the district’s incoming superintendent, Alex Marrero. He and other leadership members of the New Rochelle School District in New York are being sued for their alleged response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The lawsuit claims Marrero and other defendants silenced and impeded the school district’s medical director’s, Brook Balchan, efforts during the pandemic.

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“Amidst a global health pandemic, the District’s Medical Director, Dr. Balchan experienced retaliation by being excluded from meetings; assigned new roles without discussion or additional compensation; given last minute directives; had her medical judgment dismissed or ignored; experienced humiliation in front of others and intimidation by District legal counsel, with threats of insubordination; and her medical leave request was mismanaged. All together these events created a generally hostile and extremely stressful working environment,” the complaint stated.

Alex Marrero (credit: Hyoung Chang/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Marrero was the interim superintendent at the school district in New York for less than a year.

“We have reviewed the information contained in the complaint that involves Dr. Marrero, and we have been in contact with New Rochelle School District about the matter. We have full confidence in Dr. Marrero, and we stand behind our choice for superintendent,” the Denver Public School Board said in a statement to CBS4.

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Last week, DPS announced Marrero would take the reigns for the district.

“This is truly, truly a remarkable day for me as an educator, young scholar, leader turned visionary turned superintendent,” Marrero said at the time of the announcement.

The DPS Board of Education will vote on the selection June 3.

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Danielle Chavira