Boston Public Schools Didn’t Send NewBostonPost Boston School Committee Member’s Anti-White Texts When Requested

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A member of the Boston School Committee stepped down this week as a result of anti-white text messages she sent in October last year.

Lorna Rivera made anti-white remarks via text message on the day of a hearing where school committee chairman Michael Loconto was heard mocking the names of Asian attendees. Loconto resigned in short order.

During the same meeting — which addressed removing merit standards from the city’s public exam schools — Rivera corresponded with fellow school committee member Alexandra Oliver-Davila about the meeting in text messages now made public by The Boston Globe.

“Best school committee meeting ever,” Oliver-Dávila texted Rivera, according to the Globe. “I’m trying not to cry.”

This came after they listened to testimony from left-wing activist and Boston University professor Ibram X. Kendi

“Wait until the white racists start yelling at us,” Rivera texted back, according to the Globe.

“Whatever. They’re delusional,” Oliver-Dávila texted.

“I hate WR,” she texted, referring to West Roxbury.

“Sick of Westie whites,” Rivera replied.

“Me too. I really feel like saying that,” Oliver-Dávila texted.

That information became public this week — 138 days after NewBostonPost requested the text messages and did not receive them.

NewBostonPost made a public records request to the Boston public schools for texts related to the matter on January 20. 

NewBostonPost received from the city’s school department a number of text messages from that night’s meeting, but none making anti-white comments.

Here below is the complete text of NewBostonPost’s public records request earlier this year and what a spokesman for Boston Public Schools responded with:


Tom Joyce [email protected]

Wed, Jan 20, 12:14 PM    
to Press

Hello, this email message is a public records request on behalf of NewBostonPost concerning the city of Boston, Massachusetts.

I request copies of all text messages exchanged by members of the Boston School Committee concerning comments that then-committee chairman Michael Loconto made during the Boston School Committee meeting of October 21, 2020.

As these text conversations constitute official city business conversations between school committee members related to a public matter, they are subject to the Massachusetts Public Records Act.

I am aware that some of these messages were transmitted via personal cell phones. However, since the conversations related to public business, they are subject to the Massachusetts Public Records Act.

I request to receive images of these text messages by email, to this email address ([email protected]).

I would appreciate any help you can give me.


Andrews, Xavier 

AttachmentsThu, Jan 21, 3:47 PM

to meSharraNatiah

Hi Tom,

My colleagues in the Mayor’s Office informed me of the request that you submitted to the Press Office yesterday. 
Attached are records responsive to that request.
Thank you,

(Text messages presented in italics)  

Transcription of Text Messages Responsive to Public Records Request (R000876-102720) Wednesday, October 21, 2020 

546 p.m.

“SA” and Lorna Rivera (LR) 

SA – Lorna, as a member of the Exam School Working Group, thanks for your support. Mil gracias licenciada.  

LR – Your efforts made this possible! Mil gracias! 

SA – A la orden siempre, Lorna.  

LR – lguamente! (emoji smiley face) 



Lorna Rivera (LR) and Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD) 

AOD – Sure! Hi by law Chair sets agenda and we can’t vote on anything Superintendent hasn’t had a chance to respond to. He suggest talking to ML and asking him to add to the agenda for next time. We have 170 people speaking tonight so honestly this is probably not the best time to do it even if we could. 

LR – Ok wow 170!?! I don’t know if I will be able to stay awake. I am too old for this job.  

LR – Hi I calculated 170 people *3=510/60 min=8.5 hours. Is this for real? Can’t we end at a certain time? Are we allowed to take breaks? I am sorry to complain.  

AOD – Yup it’s real. 2 min each but will be a very long mtg 

AOD – I think take breaks as you need them.  


AOD – Best sc meeting ever I am trying not to cry 

LR – Me too! 

LR – Why can’t we get interpretation/translation right? Why does language access have to be so hard? 

AOD – When I was on the meeting that explained the proposed policy people got to choose to go into a room to get the whole meeting translated – at least that is how I understood it 

LR – Should I ask Dr. C what the heck? 

AOD – Sure you can text her.  



Lorna Rivera (LR) and Brenda Cassellius (BC) 


(Text messages presented in italics)  

LR – Hi why is interpretation a continuing problem for some of our communities? I hope we can improve.  

BC – We had Cantonese and I just asked Monica. This is the purview out the Committee. I suggested to Monica that if we have over a certain number of participants that we automatically default to all 10 languages but I think to provide it for SC it requires them to request it. Maybe bring it up to Mike. 

BC – I can change for my team though! 

LR – I will. I know there is so much going on. I really do appreciate your hardwork! 

BC – [screenshot of Gchat from staff member that reads, “I believe SC only requests interpreters for public comment based on who signs up for public comment. It would be good to revisit that decision.”] 

LR – Thanks! 



Lorna Rivera (LR) and Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD) 



AOD – I still stand by my statement.  

LR – I said BPS students should get preference and stand by this.  

AOD – Oh then it was both of us! 


AOD – What did I just miss? Was that ML saying Shannana and booboo??? My ADD is killing me here! LR – I think he was making fun of the Chinese names! Hot mic!!! 

AOD – That’s what I thought. Omfg he’s gonna get killed someone is going to go back and capture that LR – I almost laughed out loud. Getting giddy here! 

Someone already captured Brenda on cell in twitter (?)! 

AOD – I’ve been getting some funny tweets tonight it’s hard not to smile or laugh.  Yikes.  

LR –Dios mia!! 

AOD – No comment 

LR – People tweeting about loconto hot mic!! 

Anissa said WTF! 

AOD- Oh no! It’s gonna be ugly 


(Text messages presented in italics)  

LR – Someone texted me Loconto should resign, but I don’t have them in my contacts AOD – Oh boy How/where do I look on Twitter – sorry I’m old I’m not good at twitter LR – Send me your handle and I will forward some 

Or look up Anissa tweets 

AOD – Alexoliver 33 

Do we acknowledge the apology? What do we do?? 

LR – Did you see some of the tweets? I feel bad for loconto. Is he going to resign?? AOD – I feel bad too because he really was the person who pushed this forward with the Mayor Idk if he will do it or not 

AOD – I am not going to interrupt (?) him! Let him have his time. He needs it.  LR – Trying to redeem himself – [winking emoji] 

Good night! 

AOD – Good night.  

LR – Good morning, actually! 


Wednesday, October 21, 2020 

1034 p.m.

Lorna Rivera (LR) and Michael Loconto (ML) 

LR – Hi can you tell me how many more people left to testify? I couldn’t find the spreadsheet in google ML – 77 to go, many falling off 



LR – Hi can you tell me if angie camacho is on the list and what number? 

ML – yes she is #168, we are on 145 

LR – Thanks.  



Michael Loconto (ML) and Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD) 

ML- Do I need to worry about my non-sequitur earlier? I feel awful, I’ve been getting texts about it from Michael and Brenda.  


(Text messages presented in italics)  

AOD – I heard [end] and not whole thing. I think Anissa commented on it. I think be prepared just in case I’m sorry this all stinks! 

ML – Ugh 


On twitter? 

AOD – I know.  

I’m sorry.  


ML – Oh God no 

I don’t know what to do 

AOD – I think just again apologize. What does MO suggest? 

ML – Asking 

AOD – I think that was good 

ML – Jesus I am mortified 

AOD – I know I’m very sorry 

Do you want me to acknowledge your apology and say thanks or just leave it alone? ML – I don’t know 


Wednesday, October 21, 2020 

600 p.m.

“Marty” [Boston Mayor Marty Walsh] (MW) and Jeri Robinson (JR) 

MW – Good luck 

JR – Glad we’re remote. Lots of passion. Wish there was as much passion and concern for the rest of our 52,000 students and 122 schools and not just the select three.  

Marty – I agree with you.  



Jeri Robinson (JR) and Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD) 

JR – Yes 

627 p.m.


(Text messages presented in italics)  

AOD – What a great (unclear) totally trying not to cry, best meeting ever.  

JR – So true. So proud of the Mayor 

AOD – Me too, but we need to push because he said it was one year in his comments – we should call him and thank him so he knows where we stand.  

JR – True. I did text and thank him at the conclusion of his remarks.  

AOD – That’s great.  


653 p.m.

Sonia Barney Gomez (SBG), Josette Williams (JR) and Jeri Robinson (JR) 

SBG – Jeri how excited I’m for you. This is like doing the impossible. Waiting for the vote.  

JR – Yes. Amazing what can happen during a pandemic. There are over 800 folks watching. Wish there was as much concern about all of our kids and schools.  

SBG – Yes. Baby steps. I believe this is historic. I’m hoping community partners come in to support students to make sure our students succeed 

JW – I’m holding on. Either way, folks are really showing their true colors!!! This city is never ready for real change but time has come.  

SBG – I just told Monica we need to start scheduling our community meetings to make sure we have parent voices to [unclear] the changes permanent for next year.  


1005 p.m.

Jeri Robinson (JR) and Michael Loconto (ML) 

JR – what number are we up to? 

ML – 84. People starting to drop off now.  


1100 p.m.

“SA” and Jeri Robinson (JR) 

SA – How are you holding out Jeri. Looking pretty tired… 

JR – I am. We still have about 70 speakers.  

SA – that’s 2 plus hours by my reckoning.  

JR – Tulane [sic?] without our vote, so about 2 am.  

JR – Some folks are dropping off, let’s hope more do.  


(Text messages presented in italics)  


Wednesday, October 21, 2020 


Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD) and Brenda Cassellius (BC) 

AOD – Best meeting ever. Trying not to cry. What a great letter.  

BC – Yup. I asked him to write it and I asked Tanisha to read it. Powerful.  

AOD – Great idea! 

628 p.m.

BC – Speak it.  

AOD – Amen! 


Wednesday, October 21, 2020 

527 p.m.

Michael O’Neill (MON) and Michael Loconto (ML) 

MON – You should mention Khymani was on the national student panel last week.  ML – [thumbs up emoji] 

MON – He was excellent and made us BPS Proud.  

ML – [thumbs up emoji] 


MON – What the heck was your last comment/your mic was on. Hope you were talking to your daughter about a bedtime book. Sha boo. Boo boo boo? 

ML – Geez I’m sorry I was talking to my wife about a kid’s book 

MON – Thought so, but it came out real weird! 

ML – Should I address? 

MON – You did it right.  

ML – I’m mortified if someone took it another way, Brenda mentioned it too and said someone else texted her about it 


MON – It was right after Liz read a bunch of names, could have been interpreted that you were commenting on the names. I knew you would never do that, assumed one of your daughters was saying good night. Glad you cleared it up right away. Don’t worry about it any more.  


(Text messages presented in italics)  

MON – How far along are we?   

ML – Ok thanks. I realized that after I got the text. I feel awful.   

ML – We are on 159. 20 to go.   

MON – You corrected very quickly. Regular watchers know your daughters always say goodnight to   you.   

ML – Anissa tweeting about it. I don’t know what to do   

ML – Am I ok? I hope I put that to bed.   

MON – Please put me last, before VC and you, but after the other members.   

ML – Of course, assumed as much.   

MON – Let’s vote!   


6 43 p.m.

Michael O’Neill (MON) and Khymani James (KJ) (student member)   

KJ – Are you comfortable on the logistics behind transferring elementary school grades to letter grades?   I’m confused on that part and don’t want to ask publicly if I can get a behind the scenes answer.   

MON – I suggested last week and will suggest again tonight they bring in a 3rd party to oversee/work   with BPS on the process. They do have a method to convert BPS grades to a 12 point system, based on   the specific 1-4 grades in certain subjects. They have had to do it for years as GPA is already 50% of the   criteria. But I would prefer independent oversight to build trust.   

KJ – Ahhh I see   

Thursday, October 22, 2020   

12 29 a.m.

MON – Well done. Very well done.   

KJ – Thank you, Mr. O’Neill.   


Wednesday, October 21, 2020   

Michael O’Neill (MON) and Brenda Cassellius (BC)   

11 31 p.m.

BC Yikes.   

Thursday, October 22, 2020   

1 47 a.m.

(Text messages presented in italics)  

BC – Remember I talked about that in my interview.    

MON – (thumbs up sign)   

BC – Thank you.   

MON – (thumbs up sign)   

MON – Congrats.   


Wednesday, October 21, 2020   

619 p.m.

Khymani James (KJ) and Alexandra Oliver-Davila (AOD)   

AOD – Great points. Thank you for message to fellow students. Sooo important!   KJ – Thank you, Ms. Oliver-Davila!!!   

AOD – You are welcome! Keep asking your great questions!   

KJ – Quick question. Is what is being voted on tonight called a “proposal” or a “policy”   AOD – proposed policy   

KJ – Thank you!   

AOD – Sure!   

1119 p.m.

KJ – Wow -I had to turn my camera off because of my facials.   

AOD – That’s a great strategy!   

AOD – You are a trooper staying late!   

KJ – Thanks Vice Chair. Trying my best to pull through!   

AOD – Also you can leave! Everyone will understand because you have school tomorrow – past BSAC   members have left around 9 pm   

KJ – Yes, I am aware! Thank you – I told myself at the beginning of the year that I would attend all hours   of the meeting since they’re so important and only every other week.   

AOD – You are a trooper! Hope your teachers give you a break on Thursday mornings   KJ – Me too! [smiling emoji]   


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