Reader's view: Why is School Board afraid to let Duluth vote?
Of the speakers at the April 21 School Board meeting, 15 were for the red plan and 18 were against it. Concerns were voiced about traffic and health safety at the Ordean and West Duluth school sites. A viable and less costly alternative was sugge...
Of the speakers at the April 21 School Board meeting, 15 were for the red plan and 18 were against it. Concerns were voiced about traffic and health safety at the Ordean and West Duluth school sites. A viable and less costly alternative was suggested, combining East and Central high schools at the Central site, the so-called the purple plan.
Questions were raised concerning a possible conflict of interest since Johnson Controls drew up the plans and is also to be a primary company during construction. Other questions centered on efforts to rezone areas around Ordean to make construction plans conform, on why 80-plus acres at Central are being disregarded while a high school is being crammed onto 11 acres at Ordean, and on why Central's land could be sold for $10 million when it's clearly worth $30 million or more.
Not everyone speaking against the red plan was opposed to change, suggesting instead less-costly change.
When I read the newspaper the following morning, I was dismayed to see the School Board voted to continue with its plans for Ordean ("Crowd boos and shouts, but board picks Ordean," April 22). It was as if the vote was probably already decided prior to the meeting, and the meeting was just a formality to say that public input was sought.
Why can't School Board members listen to concerns and say, "Maybe there are things we can change. There are so many unsatisfied citizens out there that maybe we can look again at changing boundaries, moving buildings, and combining schools on an already available site."
Compromise has to be a two-way street. Changes will still be made. Why are School Board members afraid to let Duluth vote? If the majority truly wants this, a vote would show that. There would be no more doubts.