Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Verdict: Yes, I wasted three hours of my life

Classic. The facilities steering committee holds several three-hour-long public workshops, at each of which the dominant sentiment is not to close any schools. It then holds one final grand community workshop, which hundreds of people attend, to present four scenarios – three of which would close schools, though none of which would close only Hoover Elementary. Again the clear favorite was the scenario that closed no schools. So what does the committee recommend? Close Hoover, and possibly two other schools as well.

What’s worse than a public body that ignores public sentiment? One that solicits it endlessly before ignoring it.

Previous posts here and here.


lost in the triangle said...

absolutely disgusted by the recommendations. there was NO support (or mention in the RPS) for closing neighborhood schools; only a few outliers, who were not in the majority, even supported it in the workshops. as you mentioned, hundreds of people--from diverse backgrounds--expressed an unequivocal desire to keep all schools open in the final pageant of ignored public comment. if the consultants or whomever were listening, we would never have been shown the "what if" scenario 4c after the workshops--we are all in defense mode of our neighborhood schools now. i'm personally considering OCCUPY LINCOLN...

Karen W said...

How did we end up with a recommendation to close TREC? I don't see that as part of any of the scenarios. Are people completely unaware that the building is in use--as in, there are already kids assigned to and using the building?

I suppose I've been paying attention too long to say unbelievable. But seriously, unbelievable.

This whole process has been run like we are both a declining enrollment district and have an unlimited pile of money to build all new schools. I just don't see how we can afford to close structurally sound buildings. We'll be spending tens of millions of dollars just to break even on elementary capacity.

Also, this quote from the Gazette is rubbing me the wrong way this morning:

[BLDD's Sam] Johnson said no result would please everyone.

“We want to make sure that we understand that we are trying to develop a plan that preserves those things that are most important to us,” he said.

I thought the community input was fairly clear that what was important to "us" (as in BLDD)--shiny, new, 500 seat 21st Century learning spaces--is not the same as what is important to us (as in the ICCSD community)--keeping neighborhood schools open.

Chris said...

Lost and Karen -- Thanks for commenting. I imagine that a lot of people are rubbed the wrong way this morning. More thoughts here.