The Obamas and D.C. Schools

There's a lot of good stuff in this 60 Minutes interview with Barack and Michelle Obama on their family's personal transition to the White House. Michelle signaled that she and her husband are interested in Washington, D.C. school reform, even though they likely won't be sending their daughters public school. Barack Obama has called Michelle Rhee, the controversial D.C. superintendent, "wonderful." The latest news on Rhee is that she is pursuing a variety of means to strip power from the D.C. teachers union, including potentially asking the federal government to declare the city's school system in a "state of emergency," which would mean administration wouldn't have to negotiate with the union. Difficult stuff for a Democratic president or his wife to get involved in. But here's what Michelle had to say about education in D.C:

Michelle Obama: …I'm interested in education. Both Barack and I believe we can have an impact in the immediate D.C. area, in terms of making sure we're contributing to the community that we immediately live in — that's always been something that we try to do whether it's in our own neighborhoods or the schools that we've attended. So there's plenty to do.

Steve Kroft: Have you seriously considered sending the girls to public school?

Michelle Obama: You know, we're still in the process of figuring out that transition, and what we have asked people to understand is that the decision we have made will be based on the best interests of the girls. We haven't made that decision yet. We want that to be a personal process. And people have been really good about considering that.

cross-posted at TAPPED

One thought on “The Obamas and D.C. Schools

  1. xslice

    There aren’t comments enabled at TAP’s site, so I figured I’d throw a few names out for the Office of Urban Policy Director here: Michael Sarbanes (son of former US Senator Paul Sarbanes, former director of Baltimore’s Citizens Planning and Housing Association with a wide range of experience on urban issues and a good amount of political savvy) and David Rusk (the former mayor of Albuquerque who now writes and consults as an expert on urban policy).


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