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For weeks, the students and staff at Codman Academy Charter Public School had been awaiting the arrival of Fabien Fieschi, the consul general of France in Boston, whom they sought to meet months earlier at his Back Bay office.
They wanted an explanation for why his government has advised French tourists to avoid walking at night in their Dorchester neighborhood, as well as in Roxbury and Mattapan, because of concerns about crime. They hoped that once in their school, surrounded by the great mulligatawny that is Codman Square, he would accede to their wishes, see it was safe, and order the French Foreign Ministry to replace the warnings on its website with rosier language.
So many of them were aghast when he balked at doing so.