First congratulations to the Vex Robotics teams from Oak Park’s two public middle schools. Sponsored by the Oak Park Education Foundation, the Brooks and Julian teams went to the state championships 10 days ago and basically cleaned up. 

The celebration was a bit short-lived, however, as the realization spread that the foundation, currently celebrating its 25 remarkable years, had decided some months ago that it would not send the Vex Robotics teams to a world championship if the teams got that far.

We haven’t been hearing from kids, but there have been some mighty frustrated grownups meeting, organizing and leaving comments on this last weekend over their perception of unfairness. And while we get the righteous indignation — long live and don’t mess with proud parents — we also understand the foundation’s conscious decision to close this effort after state finals.

The nonprofit foundation does remarkable work on multiple enrichment fronts for our students. Last year it decided that its goals, amid always-tight resources, were to grow the overall number of program participants and, especially, to hike the number of young girls in the program. That meant heading to the “Worlds” was not possible. We like those goals and the foundation delivered on them. And like the foundation’s leaders, we wish they had done a stronger job of communicating those decisions to all the parents.

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