Saturday, November 22, 2008
President-elect Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have chosen to send their daughters to the Sidewell Friends School, a "prestigious academy that has educated generations of this city’s elite."
I've written before about a notion a right-wing friend of mine had, that public schools would improve overnight if we required that politicians who administrate them send their own kids. Can you imagine Michael Bloomberg or Joel Klein sending their kids to classes of 34? Can you imagine their kids learning in trailers and closets, or running around in buildings stuffed several times their capacity? It's not hard to imagine that would become an emergency akin to, say, building a new baseball stadium.
On the other hand, as President, Barack Obama will not directly administer any public school system. Furthermore, as children of the President, his kids will need extraordinary care and protection. I sincerely hope the school they've chosen can provide it. And were he to have chosen the DC public schools, his children would've become pawns in the union-busting plans of Michelle Rhee. While it would be nice to see the President's children in public schools, it's a good thing that conversation was sidestepped.
Personally, I think he made the best decision under the circumstances. What do you think?