Considering the opposition
Clayton Howatt’s op-ed commentary in the March issue of the Bugle [“Opposing the Twin Cities German Immersion School expansion”] set off a flurry of passionate and sometimes angry responses in the school community.
We have received letters and numerous online comments to the article from Howatt, the executive director of the Galtier Parent Organization. In the wake of the feedback, we learned that not everyone at Galtier School agreed with his analysis.
Meanwhile, one German Immersion School parent suggested the Bugle agreed with Howatt merely because we published his commentary. Not true. The Bugle has taken no editorial stand pro or con on the school’s expansion plans.
Our role, as I see it, is to provide a forum where the community can debate such issues, pro or con. Along those lines, we published TCGIS director Ted Anderson’s commentary in our February issue and asked Bonnie Youngquist, of Save Historic St. Andrew’s Church, to explain their viewpoint, in our March issue.
Out of this debate, I have gained a greater appreciation on how each side feels. I have also seen occasions where it feels like both sides are not really listening to one another, that people are talking past one another rather than to one another.
At the end of the day, I wonder if it would be helpful to have a mediator come in to help both sides find common ground and try to work out a joint solution.