The point isn't really the amount of damage done to Ahmed. The point, IMO, is to see to it that this never happens again. At any point in the chain from teacher to principle to arresting officer to booking officer, someone could have looked at the situation with a level-headed, rational, non-racist view, realized that his/her underlings were engaged in a massive and unjust cock-up, and put a stop to Ahmed's ordeal. Hell, they could even tried admitting that they screwed up and apologizing. But all the way up to the town's mayor, none of them did so. Even as the president, Google, MIT, Facebook, NASA, George Takei, and no less than Steve Wozniak (!!!) were all telling them that they screwed up; the school, the police department, and the city government all just kept doubling down on stupid.
Heads need to roll, from the bottom to the top.
A big problem is that it's so hard for public employees to be held accountable. Personally? I think a just and adequate compensation would be tuition costs in full for a private high school of Ahmed's choice; plus the aforementioned terminations. There's no need for him to come out of this a millionaire. But how likely would it be, in that case, that anyone *does* get fired over this? Not likely, unfortunately. But if someone's personal maliciousness and incompetence costs the city millions of dollars, it's much more likely that they'll be punished.