To the editor:
The Lawrence school board had a retreat last Saturday to develop a team approach to publicly deliberating volatile issues. From what was reported from the team-building session, it appears more like the board is dividing into teams rather than building a team. Instead of having a retreat, the board might better spend its time attending the workshop on eliminating bullyism that was presented to the elementary schools.
My point is that Scott Morgan broke from the "unified" front of the school board and cast a dissenting vote on appropriation of funds for the new elementary school that is over budget and questioned the wisdom of the new administration building that was purchased at a price over budget and with less space than required for the district's need. It appears that the board is now saying that one of its members was a bad boy and needs to be brought back into the official line.
Personally, I find it to be a breath of fresh air for somebody on the board to break from rubber-stamping decisions and the spendthrift mentality. Hopefully, more board members will join in this critical thinking process during future decision-making.
As a community member, I want to know that issues are being considered from multiple viewpoints. Past decisions should be reviewed especially when it becomes apparent that mistakes were made. Consensus is needed but not unanimity.
The board should rally around Jack Davidson's comments that "not giving in is extremely important" and that "there's nothing wrong in being the only person out there." It is time for the board to be honest with the community and that should start by not trying to appear unified when they are not.