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Michelle Obama Visits Georgetown Day School

Updated 1:40 p.m.
By Valerie Strauss
Michelle Obama visited a private school in the District today and is expected to tour others as she and President-elect Barack Obama search for a new school for their two daughters when they move to Washington, according to sources familiar with the plans.

Michelle Obama visited Georgetown Day School today. According to the sources, the Obama family is also considering the Maret School and Sidwell Friends School. The sources said they could only speak anonymously because the Obamas want to conduct their search privately.

Michelle Obama flew to Washington this morning to join her husband for a tour of the White House with President Bush and first lady Laura Bush.

The Obama girls, Malia, 10, and Sasha, 7, were reported to be at home in Chicago, where they attend the private University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. The eldest is in fifth grade, the youngest in second grade.

Katie McCormick Lelyveld, communications director for Michelle Obama, said she could not confirm any information about the school search and would not discuss any research the Obamas are doing.

The school that the girls now attend has more than 1,700 students from pre-K through grade 12. It is ethnically diverse and says it focuses on critical thinking through a rigorous curriculum that is "unregimented but demanding."

Sidwell Friends is a pre-K-through-12 Quaker school that Chelsea Clinton attended when President Bill Clinton was in the White House. Al Gore III, son of former vice president Al Gore, attended and graduated from Sidwell after leaving St. Albans School. Sidwell has two campuses: The middle school and high school are in the District, while the lower school is in Bethesda.

Georgetown Day School is a pre-K-through-12 school and was founded as the first integrated school in the city. The children of a number of Obama's key aides attend the school. It has two campuses as well. The lower and middle schools are in one campus, and the high school is a few miles away.

Maret School, also with pre-K through 12th grade, has all of its students on one campus. It is headed by Marjo Talbott, sister of foreign affairs expert Strobe Talbott.

By Web Politics Editor  |  November 10, 2008; 11:12 AM ET
Categories:  B_Blog , Washington Life  
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What I find curious is that
apparently "fear rather than
hope" is playing out with regard
to his wife's choice in
schooling for their daughters.

Amy Carter went to a D.C. public
school. As a former public
teacher who taught in
West Oakland, I'm saddened
by our new First family's lack of courage.

With this said, I will share the results of an informal
poll I just conducted at the 29th Safeway on Mission street as I
bought a sandwich at the deli
this evening. The Spanish speaking woman who made my sandwich, defended Obama's choice.
and said that she had decided
to sacrifice in order to send her child to private school.

I dare the Obama family to
read Paulo Freire, "Daring to Dream Toward a Pedagogy of the Unfinished.", then
pray together as family and perhaps
consider a public school.


Cynthia R.

Posted by: PrayandDream | November 11, 2008 9:00 PM | Report abuse

When its your kids, you want the best and when its your politics, you want the best! So its always such delicious irony that powerful "no vouchers" Dems, who needed the backing of powerful public school teachers unions, make the smart choice to put their kids in successful schools rather than failing ones. Now, if only these folks would make the same thing possible for poor folks by allowing and embracing vouchers. CHANGE!? But this time we mean it, honest ....

Posted by: lovinliberty | November 11, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

This is a very taboo subject. No one will dare ever write or say this.

PUBLIC SCHOOLS ARE FOR POOR PEOPLE AND MINORITIES!! The exception is charter and magnet schools. I don't blame any parent for not sending their kids to city public schools.This is the main reason why people leave the city when they have kids.

Some of these schools actually have daycare centers, thats how bad the teenage pregnancy problem is and metal detectors. The kids are so rude and disrespectful. The teachers spend most of the day trying to get order in the classrooms, ruining the education for other students. I wouldn't want the negative influences of these children to rub off on my kids.
These schools are used as adult daycare centers.

Only charter and magnet schools prepare students adequately for college. It took me 5 years to get my degree, because I spent the 1st 2 years taking remedial courses that I received no credit for.

Posted by: futuredoc | November 11, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm a conservative who happens to think that if the Obamas want to send their kids to private schools it's their choice. It doesn't become a problem until they start asking for vouchers. Let's be realistic. And as far as the conservatives funding schools since 2000. My kids haven't missed a day since they started. Must have enough funding.

Posted by: markb4 | November 11, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Hey mdwoman, can you post a picture of yourself? I have never seen a Cracker mdwoman.

Posted by: knjincvc | November 11, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Since this is an article about education, one might give some thought to incorporating into the article correct use of the English language. There being only two daughters in the family, one is the elder and the other is the younger. The "est" ending applies only when comparing three or more of something.

Posted by: 33rdStreet | November 11, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

"Public schools, by their very nature of being PUBLIC cannot be adequately secured and the presence of the Obama girls could put other students at risk."


Huh? Public schools by their very nature mean that registration of their students is open to the public at large while private schools can select through its admission policies the students they are willing to accept. The Secret Service would secure a public school no different than it would a private school. From the statement above, one would think that public schools are open to the general public to walk in and out at one's leisure.

Posted by: Verrazzano | November 11, 2008 4:31 AM | Report abuse

Obama is FOR charter schools, against vouchers.

Posted by: beachbabe | November 11, 2008 1:17 AM | Report abuse

President-Elect Obama has the right to send his kids wherever he wants. The irony is that he is on record as a supporter of public schools but he appears to be against change in the form of charter schools. But the man is no dummy; he sends his kids to Chicago Lab and will probably send his kids to Sidwell. Not a problem,it's his choice, but it sure does not reflect a confidence in the public sector. Is it hypocritical to support public schools in speeches but sent your kid to a private school? Sure it is, but plenty of public school teachers do the very same thing, so it's really not news.

Posted by: dday060644 | November 10, 2008 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Ummm -- that swimming pool was to benefit FDR -- Franklin Delano Roosevelt -- not the FDA. Sorry.

Posted by: beachbabe | November 10, 2008 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Midwoman -- did you complain when Nixon covered over the White House swmimming pool to shove the press room underground -- even though that swimming pool was paid for by pennies from school children to benefit FDA? Did you complain when Nixon built the bowling ally? How about when Eisenhower built up Camp David? So Obama hates bowling and loves basketball -- he's entitled.

RE: ACORN -- fraudulant registration does not lead to fraudulant voting. Did you really think a poll watcher would let Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck vote?

Re Private schools: The president pays school tuition for his children from his personal funds. Not one cent of your precious tax dollars will go to educate the Obama girls. Also, the Secret Service has a veto on schools -- the world has changed since Amy Carter went to a public school in Washington, DC. Pennsylvania Avenue used to be open to traffic and people could go all the way to the gate. Public schools, by their very nature of being PUBLIC cannot be adequately secured and the presence of the Obama girls could put other students at risk. The schools under consideration cater to a broad spectrum of students and offer considerable scholarship funding. Besides, Obama went to a private school through the efforts of his grandmother. Would you expect him to do less for his own girls?

Stop being so petty. The world will change, whether you like it or not. May as well go with the flow.

Posted by: beachbabe | November 10, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Some people are just too ignorant for words!!!! Why wouldn't the Obama's send their children to a private school??? So they should just traipse up and down the street so some nut could possibly harm them!!!! All I can say is IGNORANT!!!!

Posted by: CarolFriend | November 10, 2008 7:57 PM | Report abuse

What about Holton-Arms?

Posted by: pbgvluv1 | November 10, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Sour grapes, croe and humble pie is the menu of the day/month/year for the disgruntled group.
Does the sun ever shine for you? Or is it doom & gloom 24/7X365?
Get over yourselves!!

Posted by: katerinaDeligiannis | November 10, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

More faux outrage from the wingnuts to our extreme right, I see. Why shouldn't parents send their children to the best schools they can afford? Wealthy people like the Obamas still support the public schools with their tax dollars. No one should be expected to sacrifice their children to political correctness, least of all a public official who is already giving up much of a normal family life. I hope that unfortunate pregnant Palin girl won't be forced to marry her high school drop-out boyfriend, now that the governor is back home.

Posted by: greyparrot | November 10, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

mdwoman - tried to read your post but all I see is: WAAAAAAHH, WAAAAAAAHH, WAHHHHHH!

Yeah, too bad all the the Children in DC got left behind ain't it?

hokie92 Be sure to thank your conservative government for not funding education since 2000.

OK I'm leaving now so you can get back to the sour grapes at your pity party.

Posted by: JohnQuimby | November 10, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Ayers could quickly create a Small School that they could attend:

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | November 10, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

President-Elect Obama promised Americans without health care a policy as good as a Congressperson gets. It's to bad the children of D.C. can't get schools as good as the President's kids receive.

Posted by: hokie92 | November 10, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Give me a break. The Obamas need to make the best choice for the safety of their girls, and a smaller, private school is the way to go.

And mdwoman, forget ACORN. Obama won because of people like me fed up with what the Republicans have done to our country.

Posted by: RiverCityVA | November 10, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

The Obamas stole the election...called ACORN - and nothing is being done about it.

What a tragedy of the United States Constitution.

While we're in a financial meltdown - Barack Obama is planning the replacement of the White House bowling alley with a BB court..even though there's alread one outside. There goes millions of our tax dollars - on Barack Obama's BB court!!! Disgraceful - and he's not even sworn in yet. HERE'S A SNEAK PEAK OF AN OBAMA DICTATORSHIP PEOPLE - HOPE YOU'RE HAPPY...AND I CAN'T WAIT UNTIL YOU SEE YOUR TAXES GO UP - WHEN YOU THOUGHT "YOU" WOULDN'T HAVE A TAX HIKE! LOL!

Oh Yeah...there goes Michelle Obama spending money too on private schools...I guess public schools aren't good enough. Oh, I thought they were for the "middle class citizens"? mistake.

Joe Biden is a comedy sitcom of a VP.

What a joke.

Posted by: mdwoman | November 10, 2008 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Go Sidwell!!

Posted by: abparks | November 10, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

It's to bad D.C.'s public schools aren't good enough for the President's daughters.

Posted by: hokie92 | November 10, 2008 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Chelsea Clinton also attended Sidwell.

Posted by: chiquita2 | November 10, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

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