Parents React To Probe Of Racially-Charged Texts In Coatesville - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Parents React To Probe Of Racially-Charged Texts In Coatesville

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COATESVILLE, Pa. -

The sudden departure of the two top officials in the Coatesville Area School District is fueling more speculation.

According to reports, racially-charged text messages may be the center of this growing scandal, and the Chester County District Attorney's office is now investigating.

It is 2013 in Coatesville, a suburb of Philadelphia, Pa. But when you read the text transcripts, you would think it is 1963, in Philadelphia, Miss.

Here is one example, and viewer discretion strongly advised:

According to a transcript from The Daily Local, Athletic Director Jim Donato wrote to Superintendent Richard Como on June 4, 2013, "All should just have whatever first names they want…then last name is N-----! Leroy N-----, Preacher N-----, Night train n-----..."

And, according to the reported transcript, Como responds, "...could have whole homerooms of N-----!...Will N----- report to office..."

The text messages on later days also include lewd and racial remarks, the transcript shows.

The headquarters of the school district is going to be the focus of a lot of attention this week. It is first day back to school Monday. Then, on Tuesday night is a school board meeting and on the agenda, coincidently planned before the story broke, are the formal resignations of both the superintendent and athletic director.

The two top school leaders now are both the focus of the criminal investigation, as well. Both would have been allowed to keep their jobs by the school board, FOX 29 learned, until the school board found out that the Chester County District Attorney started his criminal investigation.

The district had gotten requests from the D.A. for the two school-district-owned cell phones that the superintendent and athletic director had texted each other on back and forth.

"I'm shocked and I'm appalled," says parent Paige Carey. "This is a disgrace. It's a disgrace that they are actually there, representing our children, representing us as a district. They always talk about Coatesville Pride. They are like two headed snakes. It is also a shame because I feel like they were trying to cover it all up. How are they going to cover it up and let him retire with all of his benefits? You have all these kid, they don't go on field trips; they have old books. They don't have money in the classroom for different things. But yet, they were going to let them walk away like this. I think it is terrible. It is terrible. Something ought to be done about it."

When the superintendent Richard Como suddenly decided to retire, still in the first year of the new five-year contract extension, everybody knew something was up, Keeley reported.

"They will be dealt with," says another parent. "It will go out to the district office. He is on top of it. And, I'm sure justice will be done. However there is a great concern and wonder why, and what will happen, as far as these guys' pensions are concerned."

"Do you think these are criminal?" Keeley asked.

"I'll leave that to those in that area," he responds

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