Now that the $89 million Quincy Public Schools bond referendum has passed by a 2-to-1 margin, the citizens of Quincy have a new decision to make: what do we name the five new elementary schools that will be built over the next five years?

Currently, Adams, Berrian, Dewey, Ellington, Madison, Monroe and Washington are the names of the elementary schools. Some have suggested keeping the same names (although by going from seven to five schools, two wouldn't make the cut). Other more recent names of public elementary schools in Quincy have been Lincoln, Franklin, Irving and Highland-Riverside.

There is a presidential feel to the current names. Moving into a new generation of schools that will last for the next several decades is it time to honor more recent presidents? The names of Roosevelt, Kennedy and Reagan I'm sure will be discussed. And, surely, if we stick with presidential names, the Lincoln name has to be resurrected on a new school facade, doesn't it? Lincoln was, of course, one of Illinois' most prominent citizens with many ties to the Gem City and widely regarded as one of this country's greatest presidents ever. And many would scoff, but is Quincy forward-thinking enough to consider an Obama Elementary School? Say what you want about President Obama, but he will be an historical figure in the generations ahead. Obama schools are beginning to pop up around the country already. Future generations may view him much kinder than he is viewed by many today. Time will tell.

Non-presidential names are certainly a possibility, too. There are many local names that have contributed greatly to Quincy, and would be worthy of the honor. Oakley and Knapheide come to mind. If we skipped naming the schools after individuals, look no further than trees. Drive through north Quincy and that's all you see -- streets named after trees. Quincy has long been known for its beautiful and majestic trees and has twice been named a "Tree City USA". I could hear an argument for an Oakwood, Maplewood, Elmwood or even Dogwood School (laugh if you want but we do have a Dogwood Festival).

Quincy does have this body of water that laps up to its door known as the Mississippi River, which just happens to be the largest river in the United States. So, a river name certainly could be considered. Bluffs is another possibility, the original name of the settlement known as Quincy. And this town is proud of its veterans and the Veteran's Home so it would be really hard to argue with a Veteran's Elementary School adorning the outside of one of our new schools.

The possibilities are many. What would you like to see as the names of our new schools?