Word that USD 410 had settled the lawsuit filed by patron Raymond Brandt brought to mind the words of President Gerald Ford when he pardoned his predecessor, Richard Nixon: “Our national nightmare is over.”
The comparison is exaggerated, but also appropriate on at least two counts. First, the lawsuit may not have been a “nightmare” because one could argue that clarifying the law was helpful—but it has had a negative impact on district finances and programs, which in turn affects the educational experience of our students. It also put in jeopardy a common-sense approach of community cooperation and partnership when it comes to developing mutually beneficial facilities.
The other parallel is that sometimes a decision that disappoints in the short term is beneficial for the long term. Many Americans were angry with Ford for not letting the legal issues play out to a final conclusion in regard to Nixon’s conduct in office. Some district patrons may have similar feelings about paying additional funds to Brandt to end his lawsuit. But the district’s decision was the best move for the long term. Now all parties move forward again. Let the building begin. And let the healing begin, too. —DR