It's come to this: Mayor feels compelled to issue statement that he doesn't want to destroy Boston Latin School

Mayor Walsh follows up on the Friday news-dump leak about a 2015 incident at Boston Latin School with a statement that no, he doesn't want to tear down the historic exam school:

As Mayor, I will continue to strongly support Boston Latin School's high standards of excellence and rigor, and the record of achievement that benefits the entire city. More importantly, I will never take steps that diminish that level of excellence, or put it at risk. I am committed to the goals of the BLS student, educator and alumni community, not only in maintaining the tradition of excellence, but also in ensuring the culture at BLS is one where every student feels safe from discrimination.

Walsh did not mention the odd timing of the Globe story, just two days after BLS teachers humiliated Walsh and Superintendent Tommy Chang, and a day after BLS parents held a rally to support soon-to-be-former Headmaster Lynne Mooney Teta.

Move on to have the Citgo Sign made an official landmark

With BU looking to sell the building that now serves as the iconic sign's base, the Boston Preservation Alliance has started collecting signatures on a request to Boston to designate the giant, glowing beacon an official city landmark.

Landmark designation will protect the CITGO sign permanently and require any possible changes to be reviewed (including those that result from future development of 660 Beacon Street). Further, it will recognize the CITGO sign as an important piece of Boston history and culture.

Dorchester man convicted of shooting another man in the head to keep him from talking to the feds

A federal jury this week convicted Jaquan Casanova of tampering with a witness by attempting to kill him, which could net him up to 30 years in prison, the US Attorney's office in Boston reports.

Casanova proved a poor shot and his target survived.

The two had been involved in a multi-state prostitution ring with a third man, Raymond Jeffreys, also of Dorchester. Jeffreys became convinced that the other man was talking to the feds after he was arrested in New Jersey on federal sex-trafficking charges and got Casanova to shoot him as he sat in a car at Draper and Westville streets in Dorchester, in April, 2013.

Jeffreys was sentenced to 30 years in prison in May of this year, after pleading guilty to tampering with a witness by attempting to kill him, lying to a federal agent and sex trafficking.

Casanova will be sentenced on Sept. 14.

No turning back, officials say: Boston Latin School to get interim headmaster next week

BPS says it will appoint an interim headmaster for Boston Latin School next week as officials begin what they say is a national effort to find a replacement for Lynne Mooney Teta, who resigned this week.

Meanwhile, BPS has yet to say publicly what process it will use to replace Nicole Gittens, who is resigning as headmaster at the O'Bryant School.

In a letter to Boston Latin students, teachers, staff, alumni and parents, Mayor Walsh, School Superintendent Tommy Chang and School Committee Chairman Michael O'Neill said they will not reject Mooney Teta's resignation:

We were asked yesterday if we would rescind Dr. Mooney Teta’s resignation. We want you to know that this was her decision. In no way was she asked to leave. We must respect her wishes. She feels strongly that her stepping down is in the best interest of Boston Latin School and its students.

Their complete letter:

Dear Boston Latin School Community,

Yesterday morning we met with the faculty of Boston Latin School. We want to personally thank the teachers, librarians, nurses, guidance counselors, administrators and all the other staff who took the time to share with us their concerns over the resignations this week of Head Master Lynne Mooney Teta and Assistant Head Master Malcolm Flynn.

Their decisions to leave BLS have left many staff members and students alike feeling a deep loss. Dr. Mooney Teta and Mr. Flynn served the students of Boston Latin School for a combined 64 years, and their dedication and commitment to this great institution are unrivaled. They love Boston Latin, they care deeply about its success, and they have an intimate understanding of the school’s history and cherished traditions. Each of them has contributed immeasurably to their beloved school. We are incredibly grateful for their service.

Boston Latin continues to be an example of academic excellence for the nation. This is because of the entire community -- the students, the faculty, the administrators, the parents, the staff, the alumni, and the City of Boston. We have seen that on display especially this year.

We were asked yesterday if we would rescind Dr. Mooney Teta’s resignation. We want you to know that this was her decision. In no way was she asked to leave. We must respect her wishes. She feels strongly that her stepping down is in the best interest of Boston Latin School and its students.

The leadership team of Boston Public Schools supported the administrators at BLS to address the concerns raised about its racial climate; a number of central office staff have provided extensive counsel, training and resources for the school. However, we understand that some at the school have not felt supported while BLS has come under scrutiny. When students and parents bring forward serious complaints, it is our legal and moral obligation to fully investigate such matters.

We want you to know that you have our full commitment, and the commitment of the Boston Public Schools, to work with the Boston Latin community to ensure that this treasured school remains a shining star, and continues to uphold its longstanding mission of providing a “contemporary classical education as preparation for successful college studies, responsible and engaged citizenship, and a rewarding life.”

Next week the Boston Public Schools will name an interim head master for Boston Latin and announce the process to find a permanent school leader. It is vital for the BLS community to come together and work collaboratively with BPS leadership in order to select a head master who can build upon the progress made by this community, advance the school’s tradition of academic rigor and be a catalyst for creating a nurturing school environment for all.

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