Three School Committee members and acting Superintendent Michelle Cresta — who deleted text messages from the weeks when they were discussing the fate of former superintendent John Buckey — say they can not retrieve the texts, after being ordered by the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s office to try.
“Ms. Cresta, Ms. Fox and Ms. Taylor confirmed that they followed up with their cell phone carrier and the text messages could not be retrieved,” wrote Lisa Dimier, the district’s public records officer, referring to School Committee Chair Sarah Fox and member Alison Taylor.
Dimier included information from School Committee member Jenn Schaeffner. “Ms. Schaeffner also informed counsel of the following that she wanted to clarify: I have no text messages on the dates requested between me and Sarah Fox on my cell phone. I have no backup records of any texts and my carrier does not have any records of text messages between me and Sarah Fox on those dates.
“As a result, the district is unable to produce any additional documents,” Dimier added.
Dimier went on to say that the district’s lawyer is emphasizing the importance of keeping texts moving forward.
“Please note that counsel for the district has made it clear that communications such as text message can be considered a public record and must be preserved in a manner that the District is able to archive and produce when requested. It is our hope that our efforts will allow us to be appropriately responsive to requests moving forward.
“Pursuant to Massachusetts regulation 950 CMR 32.08 and MGL Ch. 66, Section 10A, you may appeal to the Supervisor of Public Records in the Division of Public Records in the Office of the Secretary of State if you are unsatisfied with the district’s response to your request,” Dimier continued. “You may also seek redress through commencing civil action in the Superior Courts.”
This is a developing story. Stay with the Marblehead Current for more details.