Another collaborative space-sharing concept among local governments has apparently been discussed and dismissed. We’ll have to take solace in knowing it at least got a hearing.
The notion was that District 97 and its 40 central office staffers could move into the million square feet of Oak Park and River Forest High School. We liked the idea not only because we accept that D97 needs to leave its decrepit bunker over on Madison Street, but we were enthusiastic about the idea because shared space would have to mean shared ideas between our elementary and high school district. These are two entities that have not worked well together over the decades, have talked too little and collaborated only in perfunctory ways.
The high school says there isn’t space. The elementary schools say they are reluctant to leave their planned partners at the park district in the lurch.
Here’s a wacky notion. The two school districts figure out how to squeeze together at OPRF. And the parks make their return to village hall from whence they vamoosed 20 years ago. The village has fired 20 percent of its staff. There must be room for 15 park district souls somewhere.
We all save a lot of money. And our local governments are realigned for innovation.