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Posted at 7:07 PM ET, 09/30/2010

D.C. schools are fit for the Obamas

By washingtonpost.com editors

By Sally Greenberg,
Washington

I am so tired of reading articles about how no D.C. public school can measure up to Sidwell Friends School or other private schools in the city [“Obama says D.C. schools not on par with Sidwell,” front page, Sept. 28]. And what’s doubly infuriating is that our Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee gets right on board and agrees with the disrespect that President Obama lobbed at D.C. public schools.

My son has attended D.C. schools since kindergarten, and he’s now a sophomore at Woodrow Wilson Senior High School, where he takes honors chemistry, AP history, honors English and pre-calculus from excellent teachers. He also got an excellent education at Alice Deal Middle School, where the president’s children might be going had he chosen public schools.

And it doesn’t cost $31,000 a year.


By washingtonpost.com editors  | September 30, 2010; 7:07 PM ET
Categories:  D.C., D.C. politics, HotTopic, education, schools  
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Comments

Obama and Duncan should become teachers in DCPS.

Posted by: educationlover54 | September 30, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

edlover: Obama and Duncan couldn't hack it being teachers in DCPS. They wouldn't last a week at a school east of the river! But I'd love to see them try! Rhee couldn't hack it either!

"Those who can, teach. Those who can't, become chancellors and secretary of education."

Posted by: UrbanDweller | September 30, 2010 8:24 PM | Report abuse

I respectfully submit that Ms. Greenberg's experience is an anomaly. My son also went to Wilson. It was a complete nightmare. Yes, he took all the APs, etc., and, yes, there were a few dedicated, involved, and talented teachers, but all-in-all it was a complete waste of time and four years of absolute head-meet-wall frustration. It was the rare individual who was able to carve out a truly meaningful educational experience.

Is it impossible to get a good education in the DCPS? No. But, it's also extremely difficult. All the stars must align perfectly-- parents, teachers, administration, kid. Having queried my son and every one of his friends who have gone on to college feeling educationally slighted but managed to catch up through their own initiative, I do not make these statements lightly. They all, to a person, have agreed with what I am saying.

I sincerely regret ever trusting DCPS and I agree with the President. I don't know about anyone else but I appreciate and applaud his honesty.

Posted by: kirsten2 | October 1, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

I respectfully submit that Ms. Greenberg's experience is an anomaly. My son also went to Wilson. It was a complete nightmare. Yes, he took all the APs, etc., and, yes, there were a few dedicated, involved, and talented teachers, but all-in-all it was a complete waste of time and four years of absolute head-meet-wall frustration. It was the rare individual who was able to carve out a truly meaningful educational experience.

Is it impossible to get a good education in the DCPS? No. But, it's also extremely difficult. All the stars must align perfectly-- parents, teachers, administration, kid. Having queried my son and every one of his friends who have gone on to college feeling educationally slighted but managed to catch up through their own initiative, I do not make these statements lightly. They all, to a person, have agreed with what I am saying.

I sincerely regret ever trusting DCPS and I agree with the President. I don't know about anyone else but I appreciate and applaud his honesty.

Posted by: kirsten2 | October 1, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse
===

So because your son and his friends didn't have either the reinforcement outside of school to take advantage of what their schools offered, anyone else who experiences something good about DC must be an anomaly? That's rather priceless and ridiculous at best.

What you are actually saying is that DCPS is such a poorly run system that no child can benefit from an education here. So allllll the valedictorians, high test scorers etc are DOOMED because, well, because your child and his friends didn't think it was good for them. I assume they were homeschooled, since you do mention they had enough of a good experience with DCPS that they made it to college.

I challenge you to find an urban school district that has its graduates marveling at how great their schools were.

Posted by: dcis1 | October 1, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

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