On no question were School Board candidates more divided during last week Thursday’s candidate forum than on whether the Barlow Park loop should be reopened for parents.

     The City Council had voted two days earlier to close it for good.

     Two candidates said no (Margaret “Betsy” Heffernan and Gary Rodman). One said yes (Dan Zimmerman). One gave an indirect yes by endorsing the notion of multiple student drop-off points (Nathan Zimdars).

     Such mixed views reflect the simple issue’s multi-dimensions.  

     Here are some considerations.

1. The loop closure is a city concern. ...

2. The loop’s sudden closure needlessly caused inconvenience for parents and did little to fortify what has, at times during the past few years, been a frayed city/school relationship. ...

3. The loop needed to be closed — at least for now. ...

4. If the loop is reopened, it should be for safety, not for parents’ convenience. ...

5. The asphalt loop should not be removed. ...

6. Consider “Plan B:” add a sidewalk to Barlow Park. ...

     Too bad there are no school-safety grants for sidewalks.
                                   — Tim Lyke

     To read the entire editorial, including reasons for each of the six points, read the March 21, 2019 edition of The Ripon Commonwealth Press.