Virtual Voices

President for (educational) choice

Education

I can't be the only one scratching her head about President-elect Barack Obama's choice to send his daughters to Sidwell Friends School. It isn't that I don't want his kids to have a first-rate education; it's more that I want every kid to have a first-rate education.

I've wondered before about the politicians who vehemently rally for the public school system, yet pay upward of $30K for their own kids to get a really good education. Public schools are the way to go, so the campaign slogans claim . . . for everyone else's kids but theirs, that is.

Here in the Midwest, we live half a house from St. Louis proper, with the dividing line between city and county running through our neighbor's home. Public schools in the city are not even accredited, but the county has some decent schools. Still, for a variety of reasons, we've chosen to educate our girls ourselves.

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I'm not naïve. I'm sure the public options in Washington are atrocious. I trust the Obamas want to do the best they can for their girls. I wish them Godspeed as they figure out what that means for their family while their girls are so young and thrust so firmly into the public eye.

I just wish the Obamas would understand we all want what's best for our children, but not all of us can afford $30K per child per year. While public schooling is no more an option for us than it apparently is for them, I don't hear the NEA going after them like they do homeschoolers. Maybe it's just me, but this seems an awful double standard.

Mr. Obama, educate your children the way you see fit. But please allow us the freedom to do the same.

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