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November 19th, 2008
01:15 PM ET

Public or Private School for Obama kids?

 Should the Obama children attend public or private school?

Should the Obama children attend public or private school?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The nation's president-elect will be confronting arguably the toughest set of problems this country has been faced with in a very long time. The economy is in crisis, the treasury is broke, Americans are losing their jobs and we're fighting two wars. It's heady stuff but at the end of the day, one of the biggest decisions Barack and Michelle Obama are going to have to make is where to send those two delightful little girls to school.

It's a decision many parents wrestle with all the time: Public or private? Public schools tend to more closely resemble the real world, while private schools provide a more insulated and, in most cases, intellectually-challenging environment. But Sasha and Malia aren't just any two kids moving to Washington from Chicago and trying to find a new school. When they head off for their first day of class, the world will be watching and the Secret Service will go with them. Michelle Obama says she wants to be the nation's "first mom." Where to send these two kids to school will be one of the biggest decisions she has to make. And no matter what the Obamas decide, the nation will be watching and clucking like a bunch of hens no matter where they go to school.

Here’s my question to you: Should the Obama children attend public or private school?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Linda from Bisbee, Arizona writes:
What could possibly be gained by sending them to a public school? They will be easier to protect and will get a better education in a private school. I just know the Obamas can figure this out without our input.

Ann from South Carolina writes:
Public schools have nothing to offer the intelligence of these two girls. I taught in public schools for 24 of the 34 years I taught, and I watched the schools deteriorate as government demanded accountability for the funds they supplied. Today our public schools have one goal and one goal only: to place well on the achievement tests. Education has gone down the tubes.

Gina from Racine, Wisconsin writes:
After hearing the Obamas speak about their children and family values and then observing them with their children, I think they will make the best decision, in the interest of those sweet little girls, as to which type of school they attend. The media and the public should stay out of it.

Jon writes:
I've taught and done administration in public and private schools for years in the D.C. area. As good as some of the public schools in the District are, no public school here is set up to offer the combination of security for the girls and minimal disruption for other students as the private schools offer. The independent schools are smaller, have more secure campuses, and have a long history of educating children of presidents, senators, and congressmen and women. This isn't really even a question.

Kenneth from Chadbourn, N.C. writes:
A private school, of course. What's the sense of upsetting a public school just so the Obamas can be perceived as ordinary children? They aren't, and won't be for the rest of their lives. They’re the children of the President of the United States, and the only way they would help a public school is it will be the safest in the world.

Rod writes:
The Obama kids should attend whatever school they like. It’s a free country. It’s a dumb question.


Filed under: Barack Obama • Michelle Obama
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. Scott - Kansas

    Out of respect for the Secret Service teams who'll be assigned to protect them, their jobs should be made as easy as possible, and that's in a private school. A public school is a nightmare from a security standpoint.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:44 pm |
  2. Daniel Ambrose

    Jack,

    This is a personal and private decision that will have to be made by the Obama's themselves. Given though it would be in the better interest if the Obama kids would attend a private school for obvious reasons.

    Daniel,
    Atlanta, GA

    November 19, 2008 at 1:45 pm |
  3. Howard M. Bolingbrook IL

    I think this is a clear choice public/private for the Obama's and no one else. I believe the Obama children in a public school would be a disruption for that school.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:47 pm |
  4. Cynthia

    I hope that the public will let the Obama's make the decision that is best for the girls – it's a personal decision. I'm sure the girls being happy and safe is foremost in the Obama's mind.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:47 pm |
  5. Ingrid, new york

    while public school is an ideal and would be a wonderful statement of confidence in the education possible in a public school, these are the president's children and no matter what one might think, they will be better protected and better shielded in a small private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:48 pm |
  6. Judy, Exeter, Calif,

    Like Michelle Obama said, what will determine the type of school the girls attend will be based on what is best for them. That is a private family decision.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  7. Colleen, Charlotte, NC

    Little Carter went public; little Clinton went Private. It is a decision to be made by The First Momma & The President Elect that is in the best interest of their kids. At least we know they will not be going to private schools on tax payer provided vouchers!

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  8. lee in tn

    I think this is private ,between the parents and should remain this way.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  9. Jane M

    Personal decision but I guess I'd pick Private simply for security reasons.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  10. Jane (Minnesota)

    That's up to the Obamas – not the American people. I would hope a school is chosen that make's the Secret Service's job as simple as possible to protect them.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  11. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    Obviously they will have to attend a private school. There are still too many crazies running loose, not to mention the odd terrorist or two.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  12. mel from ohio

    The Obama children seem to be very bright so they will probably excel wherever they go but to be fair to their classmates and the rest of the school personnel, they should probably go to a private school where they are more used to handling the kinds of sensitive issues that will come up.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:50 pm |
  13. JD in NH

    I'd feel a whole lot better, security wise, if the girls were in a private school. That's not a statement on the local, public schools, rather a statement on the hatred and threats found on some web sites. First and foremost the girls must be safe.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:50 pm |
  14. Barb New Port Richey Fl

    In this day in age? I would probably home school my kids.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:51 pm |
  15. David, Tampa, Fl

    I think the Obamas should ask the kids which they perfer and use that as a guide in making a final decision along with safety and other considerations. My guess is a private school would be easier to deal with.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:51 pm |
  16. Mike S.,New Orleans

    I think it would send a message of bi-partisahship if the Obama children were home schooled.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  17. Rob , NYC

    Thats their personal choice , but the the threats coming towards Obama . Its safer I guess in private school

    November 19, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  18. Clara

    Private, Jack, for obvious reasons. People may not mind the limo
    pulling up into the drop-off / pick-up loop everyday. But the secret
    service security check of all lunch bags may be a little to much of a distraction.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  19. Dennis North Carolina

    Which every is best for the children.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:53 pm |
  20. KarenB, Florida

    Public school would present problems for security. (and disruption of class etc for students and teachers overall)
    Private school not as much so, since "celebrities" abound in private schools.
    or
    Make it simple for everyone, "home school" or have tutors at home (White House). Then you don't have to worry about security on the outside, or disrupting schedules of hundreds of others.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:55 pm |
  21. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    I do not believe that the Obama's pay property nor school taxes in the District of Columbia, so a private school would be fairer to the taxpayers of D.C.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:55 pm |
  22. Barbara - 65 yr old white female in NC

    I believe private school would be best. Partly because of the security, and partly because those children are bright enough that they deserve the best their parents can afford.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:56 pm |
  23. Willow, Iowa

    There are several private schools in the area of the WH, there is already a good security situation, because of politician's children there. that would be better for security.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:56 pm |
  24. Mark in OKC

    Jack, I am a public school teacher in an inner city middle school in OKC. I think the Obama's would be Crazy to send their sweet daughters to a Washington D.C. public school. There are many great public schools in the suburbs, but as far as inner city schools go, forget it. Besides, the secret service would never permit the Obama girls to be around so many violent students, many of whom have criminal records by 6th grade.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:57 pm |
  25. Lil from TN

    It's nobody's business but President-elect and Mrs. Obama and their girls. I don't have kids so I can't speak from experience, but it seems to me that the Obamas know what is best for their own children.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:57 pm |
  26. Linda in Florida

    Since President Elect Obama wants to focus on public school education, I would like to see them go to public school. However, they attend a private school in Chicago, so I would think they will continue to go to private school in DC.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:58 pm |
  27. Chubby, MO

    . . . Private. I wouldn't want them to get beat to a pulp everyday like I did.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  28. Lois, Ont., Canada

    A private school for sure. It would be easier for 'security'

    November 19, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  29. Michelle, Ft. Myers, FL

    Hi Jack,

    I have mixed emotions. I hope they are going to private school. The public school system in D.C. is probably just as useless as the public school systems throughout the country; I teach college freshmen and it's scary. I have gone into the public school system to observe what goes on in classrooms, and I have found a recurring theme: watered down education. Whatever happened to reading and writing and arithematic...?

    However, it could be a good thing for them to attend public school. Maybe their parents will see the real devastation of the education system and real progress can be made in healing this battered, broken, nearly irrepairable system.

    November 19, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  30. vern-t anaheim,ca

    while some people believe public schools would be best for the obama kidsi believe a private school would be better for them as it would be easier to provide the necessary secret service protection they require

    November 19, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  31. Larry in Florida

    Ithink it goes with out saying that they should attend a privite school. The reason I think that is because it would be easier and less distracting for other children attending privite schools. They will need to have pretty good security at all times because, and I hate to say this, because there are white surpremists and other groups who are making serious threats against Obama. That seems to me would put his daughters in possible peril. We're talking head strong and dangerous people who as I understand it, will stop at nothing to get President elect Obama. I think the government should put these groups on their terrorist list if they haven't already. They don't deserve to be called Americans.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:01 pm |
  32. Terry from North Carolina

    Jack
    This is a private and personal matter of choice to be made by Barack and Michelle Obama. If I were in their shoes I would opt for a private school based on the security issue alone. However this is their choice.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:01 pm |
  33. Joe, New york

    Why not private, he stole enough in donations from anti-Clinton donors to send them to the best schools in the world. Why don't you talk about something that is news worthy with so many important things going on in the country. This should not even be a question asked.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:02 pm |
  34. Myra Becnel

    Absolutely private school! Not only because this is the environment the girls are use to but mostly for sercurity reasons. These girls are very young and need to be protected.

    Myra Becnel
    Kaneohe, Hawaii

    November 19, 2008 at 2:02 pm |
  35. Brian M. Lion in Sewickley PA

    Jack, I've been substitute teaching in top notch schools and schools of lesser reputation. The secondary school system is broken. In the several decades that have transpired since I earned my B.A. in Education, not a single new theory or technique has been profered to advance the science of education. Teachers are tired and underpaid. Students are bored and feel as if they are imprisoned. Parents don't want to pay taxes and want their kids coddled.

    What I've found to be universally true, kids who are motivated, either by their parents or by that special spark of imagination that exists in the brightest among them, learn in spite of the broken schools.

    The Obama girls will do well no matter what school they attend. It's the several million other students in this coutry I am worried about.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:03 pm |
  36. Liz in Towson, MD

    Whatever will keep the girls safest and their school sanest. In other words, private.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:03 pm |
  37. Gigi in Alabama

    Private would probably be the best . . . but that is totally a decision to be made by the Obama's. I'm sure that safety for the girls would be foremost in their minds.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:04 pm |
  38. Conor in Chicago

    Since when do the rich and powerful send their kids to public school Jack?

    November 19, 2008 at 2:04 pm |
  39. Melissa in IN

    I don't know why the Obama's would even consider public school after their children have been attending private school their entire lives.

    My three children all went to private elementary school and then had to move to the public school because our small private school ends with the 5th grade. For 2 of my 3 children (the last is in his final year of private elementary school) public school was a rough transition. The lack of dicipline and respect for adults runs rampant in our public schools and the bad apples make a hard environment for children who want to learn TO LEARN.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:04 pm |
  40. Katiec Pekin, IL

    I think the Obamas should pick the school that is best for their children. For their safety and intellectual challenge. It is obvious
    they are very intelligent, and, security in a smaller school should
    be easier to maintain.
    Quite frankly, that state of most of our public schools would
    not provide either.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  41. Billy G in Las Vegas

    the Obama kids currently attend a private school in Chicago and I see NO reason they shouldn't attend one in Washington. just the security problems with their attending a public school would be a nightmare.

    biggest question I have is how do you keep the damn paparazzi from becoming a complete pest no matter which school they attend. you just know those leeches will be thick as flys given the Obama families popularity.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  42. Jolly Potter, NY

    I would think in the interests of their personal safety 'Home Schooling' would be the appropriate solution with Private Tutoring. They would pose too high a risk particularly in the First Term. second Term maybe an off White House Private School but I am sure the Obamas will make the correct choice – they always seem to.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  43. PC from Atlanta

    I am a proponent of public school and I hope the president-elect will work to make the public system better than it is now. But with the fascination that is surrounding the Obama family it may be best for them to attend private school for their privacy and most importantly, safety. Not because public schools are "dangerous", it's because there will be nuts out there and a public school would provide a lot more access to the Obama girls than a private school would.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  44. John, Fort Collins, CO

    The Obama kids should the school that can offer the best security for them with the least disruption to their classmates. Private schools are probably better equipped to handle these requirements.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  45. earle,florida

    The Obama's children's educational future should be the Obama's family decision, period!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:12 pm |
  46. me46

    No one should send their kids to public school the way they operate today.
    Tom
    lv

    November 19, 2008 at 2:12 pm |
  47. marti thompson

    Home Schooling is the answer..It would be cheaper to hire a tutor than send them to private school, no motorcade, no secret service at school, no food tester at school, fewer clothes to be purchased ,,,you get the idea........

    November 19, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  48. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    The answer is easy. They should get their kids into the best school they can, whether it's public or private. After all, if the Obama's short change their own children, what are they going to do to the rest of us?

    November 19, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  49. Dave in Saint Louis

    Come on Jack would you place your kids in a DC public school?

    November 19, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  50. Jackie in Dallas

    Actually, it is none of our business. However, private schools and home schooling have the advantage of better security for those two precious children. If it were up to me, which it is not, I'd opt for a private school, but one with an eclectic school population so that the children are exposed to more than just the children of the uber-wealthy, and which have excellent academic programs. If those two are anything like their parents, they are going to need accelerated programs to keep them challenged and to learn to love to learn.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  51. Larry -- Belton TX

    How should I know, Jack? I have not seen security reports nor have I visited any DC school campuses. The decision's sole criteria is the safety and welfare, along with education, of our new and precious first daughters. Debate outside this sole criteria is ignorant and portrays symbolism over substance. Not this time.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  52. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    The girls should not attend any school in the DC area, they should be home taught and kept out of the lime light. Sure their social skills may suffer a little but not living the life they'll live for at least the next 4 years. Yes, this is sarcastic. They should attend a private shcool where the kids there are already comfortable with secret service, etc.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  53. Craig, Ocala FL

    Private school makes the most sense for the safety of the president's girls. It would be a nightmare for the DC public school system, which allready seems to be in bad shape.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  54. Cindy, CA

    A private family decision. My foremost concern is for their personal safety, and that they experience as normal a childhood as possible. I have no doubt that education will always be a respected aspiration in the Obama household, whether gained through the public school system, or a private institution.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  55. Craig, Mission Viejo, CA

    Private. Besides protection, they deserve the better education since the Obamas can afford it. Let's not kid ourselves that there is an available public school which can beat the top available private school. His girls will never have a "normal" school experience anyway. So in this case, avoid the temptation to make an empty symbolic gesture and choose based on merit. It would be a more relevant example for the American people.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  56. Jay-San Antonio

    Simple, it should be what is most comfortable to his family. It is a private matter. many of us chose private schools for different reason such as prayer and intergrated faith.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  57. kathleen , san juan

    I wish they could have attended my public school in Vermont. There are many more reasons for relocating the nation's capital to my home town of Springfield, but for the moment, it sits on the Potomac, and has failed to provide adequate schools for the majority of the local children.

    A very high percentage of children in Washington attend private school. If all private schools were closed, and every student attended a local public school, he way they used to in Springfield, the public schools would improve dramatically, with or without No Child Left Behind.

    Barack Obama ran on a platform of 'change'. Give him a chance to change the schools. He was not the Chancellor of the DC school system, nor the Secretary of Education. Why blame him?

    If they sent the girls to one of the 2 or 3 good public elementary schools in Washington, DC, wouldnt that be deceptive? Does every family in DC get to pick their favorite public school?

    November 19, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
  58. Jeremy Deakins--Columbia, SC

    Jack,
    The Obamas should put their children in private school....only for security reasons. I believe private school students would be more able to handle the distractions and attention that would accompany the presidential daughters in school. If not for the security issues, I would say put them in public school. If I were president I would put my children in public school, but I am not a African American and have not experienced threats on my life and safety!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:19 pm |
  59. Michael watching from Canada

    Jack

    Private school....as it should give the new President the greatest peace of mind, thereby enabling him to properly focus on the difficult challenges ahead.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:19 pm |
  60. sue

    The children shoud attend private school. The DC public education system is one of the worst in the nation.

    Obama did not get as far as he has with a questionable education.

    We may think it is elite to send your kids to private school but given the choice and having the funds, hey it's a no brainer!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:19 pm |
  61. Steve K.

    By the sounds of these comments I'm reading, the public schools in the DC area suck. So why should Obama's kids get preference.
    Public schools in the DC area are 95% black. Private schools in the DC area are 95% white.
    It would be slap in the face to all the blacks attending public schools, if Obama does not send his kids to public schools. There should be no privileges to the rich, they're getting too much already. Obama
    should show an example and send his kids to a highly rated public school.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:20 pm |
  62. Sid...Texas

    Private schools should be the only answer...It would take more than the secret service to to handle the every day violence that we are now witnessing in our public schools. Third graders with AK47s in their backpacks?

    November 19, 2008 at 2:20 pm |
  63. Mari Fernandez, Salt Lake City, Utah

    My own four children attended private Catholics schools. So I vote for private, and agree, that it is a personal decision for the Obamas, thus we such respect their right to choose the school that's best for their daughters.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:21 pm |
  64. GMAN (retired USAF)

    As good as it would be for the girls to attend the real world school system, it would be a security nightmare.I am sure the school would be in lockdown everyday and god forbid the girls got in a fight! I would hope they would pick private schooling.

    GMAN
    Larimore ND

    November 19, 2008 at 2:22 pm |
  65. Dawn

    Jack, private School should be the only choice.
    Given the fact that their Dad will be the President, their safety and well being should not be compromised.
    Dawn
    Brampton, Ont
    Canada

    November 19, 2008 at 2:24 pm |
  66. leroy from houston,tx.

    Most definitely private school. They are better equipped to handle the media onslaught and the day to day security issues.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:25 pm |
  67. Mertis

    Jack,

    Given a vote (Which we have not.) I'd choose a private school. For the children's safety and to give them the chance to grow up out of the public spot light as much as possible.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:25 pm |
  68. Maureen

    From Montreal. Public or private school? What a question. If the public system would be up to a respectable standard, this would be a good option. However, from recently reading how deplorable the Washington DC public school system is, totally underfunded, poor resources, what choice does the next "first family" have? None. The girls have been attending a private school in Chicago – we should not criticize the parents for wanting to continue with access to a good education. At the same time, Barak Obama has already said many times that education standards must be brought up to give every child a chance to compete in the global picture. Good luck to them, whatever their decision is.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  69. Roger from Espanola, New Mexico

    The choice clearly should rest with Mom and Dad. My own opinion is that the choice of a good private school is probably the best so as to enable the two girls to live more "normal" lives Let's face facts, these girls don't have the option anymore of being unknown!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  70. Steve of Hohenwald TN.

    What ever he feels most comfortable with.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:26 pm |
  71. Bill, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    President Obama and his wife should enroll their children in a school that will give them the best education possible. That would be a private school for which they should not be criticized in anyway. They can afford to send them to a private school and they will be the one paying to send them there. That makes it a private matter and should be no concern to the public. President Carter made the mistake of sending his daughter to a public school sacrificing the child's happiness just to please the public.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:28 pm |
  72. Eileen, Peabody MA

    Private school.

    The private schools in Washington D. C. are very familiar with the security required for high profile children, therefore they will know the ins and outs of the secret service as well as how to vet their friends for sleep over’s. (joke...not much of one....but a joke)

    November 19, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  73. Pat in Chantilly

    Definitely private school. I live outside of DC and the schools are terrible. I've been teaching for 33 years and I would not send my children there.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  74. Ralph, Corpus Christi

    As private as possible...

    November 19, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  75. Mike, Syracuse NY

    He should send them to private school. He should also expand the voucher program so everyone in the US has that choice too. Charter schools in DC provide a better education for half the cost per student than public schools. Privitize all schools and we'd all have better schools at 50% of today's school budgets.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  76. Kel in Auburn, AL

    I say private. Let's not make the Secret Service's job any more difficult than it already is!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:29 pm |
  77. Connie from "BLUE" Indiana

    Jack, Those two little girls need to go to private school so they can be protected to the fullness. There are a lot of nut jobs out there.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:30 pm |
  78. Michael and Diane Phoenix AZ

    Has anyone seen some of these public schools? Come on, a private school will be safer for them. Even the so-called "richer" public school districts have their security problems. Things have changed quite a bit since Amy Carter went to public school.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:31 pm |
  79. Mickie

    Like the public should have anything to say about this question. Parents of any child should have the only say.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:32 pm |
  80. ajks

    As a public school teacher, I feel it would be great for mainstream children to see the President's children in a public school. Having said that, I think the security for the President's girls is paramount–and that would be best achieved in a private school. Private school is the best choice.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:32 pm |
  81. Markus from Chicago

    They should have the freedom of choosing which ever they find suitable like everybody else.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:33 pm |
  82. Matt in Stafford, VA

    That is something for the Obama family to decide, not for anyone else. I'm sure they will make the right choice.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:33 pm |
  83. ozzi in AZ

    I think they should go to a private school.
    They have the opportunity to get the best education available and they deserve it and should take advantage of it.

    Our public schools need help, and in as much as it would be beneficial for the president to experience the shortcomings first hand, I think having such high profile students and the secret service in a public school would be too disruptive to the other students and they don't need another challenge to overcome.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:34 pm |
  84. Ann from S.C.

    The president's children should attend private schools. Public schools are no match for the U. of Chicago Lab schools they have been attending . Public schools have nothing to offer the intelligence of these two girls. I taught in public schools for 24 of the 34 years I taught, and I watched the schools deteriorate as government demanded accountability for the funds they supplied. Today our public schools have one goal and one goal only: to place well on the acheivement tests. Education has gone down the tubes.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:34 pm |
  85. Sandra -- Oklahoma

    As much as I would like to say public school. To avoid the accusation of elitism. I have to say private. The security and accompanying chaos that would occur in public school would cause way more distraction than a school could reasonable deal with. It is a shame,too, because I think public schools help children learn to live in the 'real' world much better than private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:36 pm |
  86. Gina in Racine, Wi

    After hearing the Obama's speak about their children and family values.....and then observing them with their children....I think they will make the best decision, in the interest of those sweet little girls, as to which type of school they attend.

    The media and the public should stay out of it.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:37 pm |
  87. Timothy

    Private......The kids will go through a lot of scrutiny if they are placed in a Public School. It will change their attitude / personality / among other things.

    Timothy

    WV

    November 19, 2008 at 2:37 pm |
  88. Anne

    Whatever their parents think is best for them.

    These little girls will be in enough of a fishbowl as it is. Their school, whichever it is, should be a comfort zone.

    And, frankly, it's none of our business where they go to school. That's a decision for parents.

    Anne
    Texas

    November 19, 2008 at 2:37 pm |
  89. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    Public School. How can the Obama's expect to convince Americans that they support public education when their own daughters go to private school at taxpayer expense. Public schools were good enough for my children,they should be good enough for Obama.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:38 pm |
  90. Randy in New York

    Whatever Barack and Michelle Obama thinks is best for the girls is fine with me.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:38 pm |
  91. Michael from Greenfield, Wi.

    I would prefer public, but the reality's concerning the security of the children make public school a huge liability that is not worth the political risk. The public will have to just over it that the children are going to a private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:38 pm |
  92. Jeffrey Cohen from Los Angeles, California

    The Obama children should attend the school that they and their parents feel most comfortable placing them in. It shouldn't matter to the American people whether the Obama girls attend a private or public school because it is not our welfare that is at stake.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  93. Markel Houston

    The girls are in private school now. There is no good reason for the girls' education to suffer. The Obama children are entitled to the best education their parents can afford.

    Enrolling the Obama girls in Washington's public school system would be beneficial to the school system at the expense of the girls' education. There are some significant improvements that would have to be made to the structures and the staff in order to accomodate the girls' safety and security concerns.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  94. David P. Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – no public school in the DC area is secure. The Obama kids are, at least hypothetically, targets for various kinds of "bad guys." Only a private school has the money and physical facilities to keep kids who are kidnapping targets safe.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  95. mac from traverse city Michigan

    How parents choose to raise their children shouldn't be a matter of public discourse. If the Obama's were just wealthy private citizens who were not going to be occupying the white house the answer would be a foregone conclusion. The fact that the wealthy are hesitant to put their kids in public school is an issue the Obama's can and should address as president and first lady, but they should not be forced to put their children in peril to appease anybody. In addition we the public should be louder in demanding that the sorry state of public education be addressed immediately because most of the public cannot afford quality, secure,private education for our kids.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  96. Tina (Ft Worth)

    I am just glad this is not my problem. I lean towards private schools since there is probably less nonsense but every child should experience public schools to see what a mess it is and how their daddy should fix it. What happened to respect that schools used to have? Oh yea. No child left behind. Enough said.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  97. susan from Idaho

    They have been attending private schools why break the trend? Their lives will be under so much scrutiny it is best for them to have as much privacy as possible.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  98. Tyson (San Diego, CA)

    Lets kill two birds with one stone and hire Senator Hillary Clinton to become their home-school teacher. Technically, that would get her back into the White House and on Obama's team.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:43 pm |
  99. luckylady10

    I think whichever choice they make will have an impact on the two girls but perhaps it's best to go private as they can have more security & deal with kids from similar backgrounds. I'm beginning to think that Obama might be too young for this role but I think America was ready for a black president. I just hope the role doesn't become too much for them.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:45 pm |
  100. Agnes from Scottsdale, AZ

    Hi Jack: The Obama girls should attend private school. It's a fact of life that they will need special protection and care, simply because they are the Presidents kids. Also, why should the local school system be totally disrupted due to their attendance. No doubt they'd get a great local education in the public schools, but there are broader issues to consider in this case. It's not a matter of rich vs. poor. It's a matter of what's practical.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:46 pm |
  101. Patrick of Dover NH

    Private school. The Secret Service detail would be a distraction to other students in a public school. There would be too much Press at the school every day taking interviews from every student documenting it like a circus. At private school the kids will be able to go to school and learn like normal students, which is the purpose of them going to school. The kids are not going to school to be on display. There is no fish bowl.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:46 pm |
  102. Bill Klewitz

    Public, like the rest of us that want change! Who can afford private school these days, a tank of gas is just getting affordable again.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:48 pm |
  103. Annie Florida

    Private...better protection...better acclimation to their father as President and the effects at school.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  104. Tolu - Chicago, IL

    Let's not politicize the future of those young girls...
    They were in private schools in Chicago, so they should continue to be in private schools in Washington.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  105. Dale

    As to the Obama's choice of schools......that is entirely their business.......no one else's. We have far too many people sticking their noses into other people's lives and telling them what they should or should not do.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  106. Tolu - Chicago, IL

    Besides the issue of security, let’s not politicize the future of these young girls…

    They were in private schools in Chicago, so they should continue to be in private schools in Washington. Period!

    November 19, 2008 at 2:53 pm |
  107. Shannon Wadding, St. Paul, MN

    Jack, if Obama represents himself as the man from the street, I vote that Obama's girls go to public school as ambassadors so they can help fix our failing schools.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:53 pm |
  108. nora CC TXAS

    It is a private matter for the Obama's to decide. I would think private for the safety of the children, their life is going to be a circus anyway, maybe a little peace at school would be nice for them. Those are sure two cute little girls, hope they stay unaffected by all the hoopla. I think grandma will help with that also.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:53 pm |
  109. debinOH

    I think that it is obviously their choice; however for the safety of these girls I think that a private school is the only way they can go. I think that anyone who is offended that they would choose a private over a public school are just seriously nuts! In fact as crazy as the guy who wanted Obama to take a public plane to see his grandmother.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:55 pm |
  110. JIM

    My buddy Jack Cafferty. Barack Hussein Obama should send his children to public schools. After all, he claims to be the man of the people. He should set the example.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  111. Anj in CA

    Why is this the public's business? The Obamas will make the right decision for their kids, and we should stay out of it.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  112. Robert Smith, Jr.

    I think that they should be home schooled or private school. Granted it would be nice for them if they could go to public school but Im sure they could do home school much cheaper than the cost of secret service people and their education would probably be better also.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  113. Kevin, Chester Springs PA

    The Obama girls should go to private school. They currently go to private schools in Chicago and there's no reason to switch to public schools when they move to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. And besides going to public schools would be a security nightmare for the school and its students. DC private schools are better equipped to handle these issues. For folks that think a public education for the girls would show better for Obama, well... get over it. There are more important things on the Obama agenda.

    November 19, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  114. doodshippichik

    Sending Malia and Sasha Obama to public schools would be a logistical nightmare for the Secret Service ... even if the Obamas wanted to, it just isn't doable. They clearly are loving, caring parents and want what is best for their girls. In this case, that points to private schools for the First Daughters.

    Norah
    Ocala, FL

    November 19, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  115. mary

    The answer....whatever is best for their family. None of our business!

    November 19, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  116. Marge in New Port Richey, Florida

    In Washington, DC? I think it might be one of the worst public school systems in the country. DEFINITELY private. Then they'll be surrounded by other kids whose parents are politicians and/or rich so they won't be as big a novelty as they would in a public school. Plus they'll get more protection which they deserve and unfortunately, will probably need.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  117. Ralph Garner

    Thats their business. They are wealthy and will never hobnob with common people so they may as well go to a private school. Perhaps they can achieve an IQ above 130.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  118. Karen - Nashville

    Private school, and security isn't the only reason. Public school teachers are under enough stress without a media microscope focused on them, or having to deal with curious parents and other members of the public. Also, private school teachers in the area will have other high-profile students so they will not become star-struck themselves.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:02 pm |
  119. Sarah

    Unfortunately the biggest consideration in this decision is their security, so the choice to go private is almost a foregone conclusion. Although this is obvious it won't stop some people, like the rightwing radio hosts, from jumping on this when it's announced and lambasting their choice. It'll be another sign of Obama's 'elitism'

    November 19, 2008 at 3:02 pm |
  120. Brian from Fort Mill, SC

    We are talking about Washington, DC, right?

    'Nuff said!

    November 19, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  121. carol in Oregon

    Is he just like us or is he an Elitist ? Their choice will tell us. I think they are elitist and will choose a private school. Jimmy Carter chose public. Clintons private.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  122. Ken in NC

    It should be a private matter for the Obama's to make. They should make the decision they consider to be in the best interest of "THEIR" girls. We made the decision for our daughter based on what was best for her and available to us. They are no different from us in that respect. There are some parents that do not have that choice available to them so they go with what is within their range.

    The girls are already in Private School so it is my opinion that they should continue in an environment that they are familiar and comfortable with. When considering what is best for the girls, safety is always an issue so I am confident they will take into consideration any and all input from the Secret Service.

    Unfortunately there are those among us that will have a difference of opinion and they are entitled to their opinion. They may not agree with the decision of the Obama's but they are not responsible for the continued growth of the Obama girls. I just hope that people will understand that this is a family decision.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  123. Dan from Kitchener

    Private as regular public to hard to police for the children's safety.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  124. Maddy, WV

    Private....as in the Whitehouse, with tutors/security. I worry alot.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  125. Michael - Minnesota

    I will agree that this is a private matter, however, as an educator, I feel that if they decide on a Private School President Obama will need to look at the reasons he chose not to go with public, and assess what needs to be done to fix these faults.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  126. Katty OR

    Silly question – of course it has to be Private School for all the obvious reasons.....just ask Amy Carter.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  127. Cori from Colorado

    Has anyone asked his daughters what they want? Besides, this is a family matter, not a matter of public opinion.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  128. Lauri, Baltimore MD

    Frankly, it's none of our business where they go to school. If there was ever such a thing as a "private family matter" this would be it. That said, hasn't Bristol Palin married her baby's father YET?

    November 19, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  129. Jeff from Sturgis, MI

    Option #3: Home-school them.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  130. Jwal, Tx

    As a parent myself, I believe that the Obama's should seek whatever school their children will be comfortable with, considering the whole family, with the utmost security being the number one priority, and secondly their education. It is a parent's decision, and no one else, period. Either choice will and should be respected. If they choose private, it should not be a surprise to anyone, since they currently attend private school in Chicago.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  131. Anna, Missouri

    I am old enough to remember how the media burst into the lives of former children of Presidents and we all know they would do anything to get a "scoop" now. Just because he is President it doesn't mean we, the American people, have the right to know everything about his kids. They are not in public office. Private schools are much more capable of protecting these kids.

    As far as the people that think he should put them in public schools to make a political statement, I have to ask, what kind of idiot would want any child to be put in harms way just to make a political statement?

    November 19, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  132. Ginger H -- West Melbourne, FL

    That's a definite dilemma for the Obamas. I can see why the President-elect would want to put them in public school because he wouldn't want to send the wrong message by sending them to private school; however, I think that most of us would understand the need to protect these girls who didn't choose this life. Those who would condemn him for sending them to private school would probably find something else negative to say anyhow, so I think the most important thing is protecting these girls. DC schools don't offer much protection, and imagine what a distraction it would be to the rest of the students. They need to go to private school. It's OKAY.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  133. Matt from Albuquerque

    This decision is really none of our business. It is the right & responsibility of the parents, in this case the President-Elect & his wife, to decide as they see fit.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  134. Dilibon

    Public school would be a political statement. Obama should stay away of acting with his kids in such a manner to simply make a politicla statement. hwo in Americ awould be making more than 250k with a wife who was earning more than 150k would enroll hsi kids in a public school? It just does not make any sens. The kids needs to attend school with their peers, with student swith identical incomes as their parents. In addtion, a public school would be more flexible when it comes to security. Michelle should understand that the risks to those children are much higher than any other kids and their protection should be the priority! Private school all the way Mr. and Mrs. Obama. Let the political critics say whatever they want btu you will have your kids after the presidency prepared to takeover where you left off!!

    November 19, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  135. Linda in Bisbee, AZ

    What could possibly be gained by sending them to a public school? They will be easier to protect and will get a better education in a private school. I just know the Obamas can figure this out without our input.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  136. Sharon

    If they were my children I would opt for private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:16 pm |
  137. Mike, Albuquerque, NM

    The presence of the Presidents children in a public school would put the other children at risk in the event of a kidnapping or attack.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:16 pm |
  138. Sue

    The place for the girls should be where they could feel and be treated
    the same as their peers.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:16 pm |
  139. Lois from Pittsburgh

    Hi Jack,
    This is a private family matter, however for the safety of President-elect Obama and Mrs. Obama daughters, private school. I have had experience with public school, as a step-mom. What a change from when I attended public school. Teachers should be able to teach without constant disruptions and concerns with the violence that often accompaines these episodes. My step-son attended private school for several years and did wonderful. My husband and I sold our home moved to a different area of Pittsburgh. He once again attends public school where we now reside, the atmosphire is so much better. I no longer dread going to this school, as I did in the city, where everytime I entered it was necessary to be searched.

    Lois from Pittsburgh PA

    November 19, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  140. Bruce St Paul MN

    If the secret service tried to hang around a public school, they'd probably get arrested. Then there would be a battle over jurisdiction and it would get ugly. Who needs that?

    November 19, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  141. David Bakody, Dartmouth NS

    What is best for children putting all influences aside.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  142. Bob D, Morristown, NJ

    I'm disappointed that you would ask such a question. It's none of my business. That said I'm certain that the only criteria that will be used is what's best for the children given the extraordinary efforts inappropriate people will make to gain access to them.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  143. Jackie in Dallas

    Joe, New york
    ____________
    Why not private, he stole enough in donations from anti-Clinton donors to send them to the best schools in the world.
    ____________

    He didn't steal any from me. I'm neither anti-Clinton nor a Republican, but an Independent. However, I sent several small donations to Obama's campaign (all I can afford after 8 years of Bush) because I believe in his desire for unity and an end to partisan and non-productive business-as-usual in Washington.

    As for campaign donations, he cannot use them for private expenses such as his children's education. That was part of the stink with the Palin/wardrobe situation. And he doesn't need to...he has several books out, both of which have been on Best Seller lists. He made his money that way. He also has had his salary for the Senate.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  144. Bill in Michigan

    While I am an advocate of public education with parental involvement, I think it is in the best interest of the Obama children to attend a private school for security and safety reasons.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:23 pm |
  145. Jerry from Jacksonville

    Due to security reasons they should be in a private school, it would be alot easier to protect them there. With all the nut bags running around today they need to be in an area that they can be protected against anyone wanting to do harm to them.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  146. Rob C.

    It's totally up to the parents but if it were my children then a private school would be best. Being the 1st KIDS is going to be tough enough but throw in Secret Service at a public school and stand back all the disruption of all normal activities. Maybe attending a school where the Congressmen/women send thier kids would be better.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  147. Chryssa

    The decision needs to be made not on the way the school is labeled, but on the quality of the teachers and resources. I'm sure the Obamas feel the same way and will base their decision on what's best for the girls, not how prestigious it may sound.

    Boise, ID

    November 19, 2008 at 3:26 pm |
  148. BG, Seattle WA

    While this should remain a family decision, given the rise in hate activities since the election I believe a private school is best. Besides, the girls were already attending private schools. They should not be used as experiments or to highlight problems within the education system. We should view their safety and education as more important than various special interests.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  149. Mark

    Jack.
    It does not matter what school President elect Obama sends his girls to. Private school will be paid for out of his or Michelle's salary. Public school is paid for by the DC taxpayers. Also where they feel provides the best education for their children is their business and theirs alone. It is definitely none of mine nor anyone else's. Wherever they end up the Secret Service will have their hands full keeping the 1st children safe in a school environment

    November 19, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  150. L.M.,Arizona

    Whichever provides the most protection for Obama's kids and their fellow students. Home school should not be taken off the table. The fact is that nothing will ever be a typical day for this family.

    L.M.,Arizona

    November 19, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  151. Chris, Olean, NY

    Jack, what we think is totally irrelevant. This is a family decision for the Obama's to make, and we should respect their decision.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  152. Janice Illinois

    They should go where they will be safe from harm. That would be the first priority.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  153. LYNDA in CT

    No doubt here, PRIVATE.
    There, they will be secure and safe. They won't be part of the circus if they attend public schools.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  154. Joe in MO

    Whatever their parents choose.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  155. Debby

    The Obama children should attend public school. How else can the new President observe what's really going on in the public school system? It would allow him to see up close and personally what the majority of parents in America are dealing with.

    Debby
    Cleveland, TN

    November 19, 2008 at 3:31 pm |
  156. Michael, Toronto, CANADA

    It's none of our business what school the Obama's send their girls. That is a question for the Obama family. I think the public demands too much information from our public officials, can't we just leave the kids alone?

    November 19, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  157. Dan, Chantilly VA

    The public schools in DC proper are some of the worst in the nation. Unless he plans on driving his kids out to Maryland or Virginia every day, I'd say go with private. A political statement isn't worth the safety, security, and future of your children.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  158. F Machado - Connecticut

    I think it is up to Obamas make the decision.

    They should make the decision based on what they think it is the best for their girls.

    If they think public is better, go for that, otherwise go send them to private school.

    Of course either decision they make will be criticized by the media.

    If they send the girls to private school, they will say they don't trust the public school system or something else. It they go to private the media will say they are snob or something else.

    Let them decide

    November 19, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  159. Joyce

    Private matter, private schools. Safety is a key issue.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  160. Pat,Lexington, Ky.

    I have heard that at least some Wash. D.C. public schools are horrible. But beyond that I think the girls' safety is of paramount importance, and I believe private school would fill that bill better.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  161. Russell, Seattle, WA

    I'm reminded of an episode of The West Wing where Zoie was abducted creating a nightmare scenario. What if such a thing were to happen to one or both girls? It is not just a matter of sending a politically correct signal; the matter is much more complicated than that. There is the security of the girls, the security of other children, the integrity of the Presidency and National Security risks to consider. In a perfect world it would make no difference. It's not a perfect world so I would vote that the girls be placed in a discreet private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  162. ejmounsey Granville Ohio

    The girls safety must be the only factor. EJM Granville Ohio

    November 19, 2008 at 3:37 pm |
  163. Michael, Pensacola, FL

    The American dream is to be able to send your family to the best schools, best hospitals, the best anything and everything you can afford. If he's paying for it, let him send them to private school because right now that is the best.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  164. Paul Round Rock, Texas

    It should be up to the Obama's to make a choice of schools for their children. It should also be a school that will have the least impact of sercret service with the children at all times. The childrens safety comes first.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  165. Sharon P.

    Personally, their parents decision but, they should be where they are safest while their parents,are now unable to be at their every whim as they are as used to in the past. They should be #1- SAFE, #2- Well educated. Their parents will decide whats in the best intrest of the family unit. Westboro, MO.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  166. Bella from Naples

    Hi Jack
    This is a no-brainer. The
    girls have been in private school.
    They are moving (difficult) to a new
    city and home. They should definitely
    be going to private school again, as a bridge.
    I hope for the best for them.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  167. Lenore in Kansas

    For security reasons alone, a President's children must now attend private schools. All other considerations are trumped by that. It would be great if our public schools were better and safer– and the nation must get busy and make that happen. Maybe this decision will throw more light on the plight of our schools.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:41 pm |
  168. Jay in Texas

    While I agree with other comments saying this is a private decision that can and should only be made by the parents, I would imagine that the children would be best-served going to a private school.
    Brownwood, Texas

    November 19, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  169. yvette

    I think that the President Elect Obama and Michelle should be able to enroll their children where ever they choose just like the rest of us. My first thought however was that if the girls went to a public school, how would the other children adapt to secret service and other people and procedures that may be uncomfortable. But then again, how do children at private schools adapt? Whatever school they choose, perhaps the number enrolled should matter in addition to how well the school's teachers, programs, and other benefits are.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  170. Lene' , IL

    Of course this is a personal decision and the Obama's I am sure will make the right choice for their children. I am sure they will probably choose to send them to a private school for the security of their girls as well as other children. I am sure another factor would be to keep them out of the public eye as much as possible so they can lead a somewhat normal life and so they are not exploited by the media.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  171. I. B., Rocky Mount, North Carolina

    Security would be my first concern. Where can they best be protected? My second concern would be education. What school would present the best opportunity for a well rounded education. Therefore, I would say a private school. Public school would be a security nightmare. Education in a private school is a lot more flexible than a public school.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  172. Doug Zalesky

    Just like any other family, where they decide to send their two delightful daughters to school is no one's business but their own. People in this country that throw a fit about where they choose to send them to school at need to get a life, take care of their own affairs and stay out of other peoples lives. Even though they are the first family they still are a family and need to be treated with respect and privacy, just like other families expect to be treated.

    Doug Zalesky
    Hesperus, CO

    November 19, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  173. Joan from Binghamton,NY

    I think that they should go to Private School. There are too many ignorant people out there and their kids listen to their racist ways. The parents of the children should choose what they believe is best for their children at this time. People will state their opinion no matter what their decision is.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  174. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: Do you actually think that the President elect is going to place his daughters in public school in Washington D.C.? You already know the answer to that--it will be private.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:48 pm |
  175. Harold from Anchorage,AK

    Neither.Home-schooling would be perfect. The White House has good security,and those children couldn't find a brighter teacher than Michelle and Barack

    November 19, 2008 at 3:48 pm |
  176. Paula (Indiana)

    I have a great deal of confidence in Ma & Pa Obama. I am sure whatever they decide will be done after weighing all the options and discussing the matter thoroughly. I am sure the Obamas will include the girls in the discussion to give them a voice in making the choice. Optimum security for the children has to be one of the main deciding factors. I vote for private school. I love our new first family... As a citizen, I want each of them well protected. The whole world is counting on them to lead us out of these trying times.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
  177. David in Raleigh, NC

    If Obama is really for Change. He should send his daughters to public school.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
  178. yvonne

    For security reason private school would be the best choice plus a radical change does not have to be added to the change they are already having.

    Yvonne Arecibo, Puerto Rico

    November 19, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
  179. Allison Anderson

    I know what the Obama's are going through? I too am trying to make that decision for my two girls here in Washington, DC. It is a daunting task to determine what type of school environment, whether it be public or private (or in the case of Washington, charter) that will be best for your child. In any event, it is an extremely personal decision. First and foremost, Michelle and Barack are their parents and will decide what is the best environment for their girls. They should not be second guessed on whatever decision they make.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:50 pm |
  180. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Dear Jack,

    does not matter what people think since this is a personal choice since only the parents have the freedom to choose themselves what is best for their children!

    November 19, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  181. CJ in Atlanta, GA

    Private school. The Obama kids have gone to private school all along, the family can afford to do so, so send them to private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  182. John

    Public schools!
    Why should Mr. and Mrs. Obama be shouldered with the financial
    burden of educating their children......It takes a Village, remember?

    Oh yeah.... I guess /this too/ will be "Change we can all believe in"

    November 19, 2008 at 3:52 pm |
  183. arilion (from NY)

    There are 2 excellent public schools that the children could benefit from. Moreover, the public school selected, could benefit from the needed funds spent on security required to safeguard students. While this would be a challenge for the 24 hour security detail, the US Secret Service is trained for such challenges.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  184. LM from Fayetteville, NC

    PRIVATE for their safety.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  185. Dianne, TX

    This matter belongs to their parents. I understand the girls were in private schools in Illinois. I donot belive it is our decision. Let those little girls alone. Those little girls donot have to be ambassadors to anyone. We did not expect it of the Bush girls and rightly so. That decision is entirely their parents.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:53 pm |
  186. Beth, Boston, MA

    The degree of security these two beautiful ladies require should make the discussion moot. Private schools can implement identification requirements and restrictions that would be impossible for a city public school.

    This is less about education than it is about safety.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  187. Ed Woodbridge,Va.

    Private School – 1
    Public School – 0

    No brainer! In reality the Obama's never even entertained the idea of sending their kids to public schools!

    November 19, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  188. charley

    jack Where the Obamas want to send their kids to school is their business and no one elses.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  189. Kim (Dublin, Ohio)

    I think if you can afford it private school is the way to go. Unless something drastic happens in this country with public schools they will probably fail or be taken over by big corporations to avoid failure.

    I went to private school and worked a part time job to help my parents pay for it....best experience of my life.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  190. Tiffany from Philadelphia, PA

    Obviously this is something that their mother and father must decide, but for security reasons, I think they should enroll in a a private school. They're still both very young and are adjusting to living in a fishbowl. I think being in a more secure, contained environment will give them some sense of normalcy.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  191. David, Richmond VA

    Public school is the only way to learn how the world REALLY is. It may not be as pretty as parents want it to be, but that is the world. Do not shelter children, It will hurt them down the road.

    November 19, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  192. Harold from Anchorage,AK

    Neither. The White house would be a good, safe classsroom; and Michelle and Barack are very well educated and extremely bright.The kids couldn't find better teachers

    November 19, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  193. Shirley -AK OHIO

    Obama children should go to private school. Obama has worked hard and been through a lot and deserves to send his children to a private school to keep them safe and also because the Secret Service will be with them 24/7, which will be a distraction to the other children.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  194. Patsy

    It's none of our business. There will be those who will criticize,
    there will be those who disagree, there will be those who think
    they have a right to express their opinion. They will be wrong
    and to nosey for their own good.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  195. Doug from Bloomington IN

    Private school would probably be best. The private schools in the DC area are already prepared for children of the famous and the political. Public schools would be terribly disrupted by the Obama kids being there.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  196. Ray [Maryland]

    If the Obama's really want to get a feeling for the DC area, and the way of life for the people in Washington. Then I would have to say a good reform school in the area.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  197. David - Chicago, IL

    President-Elect Obama and his wife are parents. They need to make the decision on what's best for their children academically, and socially. They also have some unique security issues that must be evaluated a part of the process.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  198. Eric VanSickle (Cedar Falls, Iowa)

    Jack:

    I would say "public school," but with the security concerns of the two girls, and with the fact D.C. schools have a lot of metal detectors, the Secret Service may be unable to do their job effectively watching and protecting the girls. Private school might be the best bet for the Obamas. They just have to pick the right one.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  199. Martin, Richmond B.C.

    Given the two options, this is a no win situation. If they are sent to a private school then the Obamas will be branded "elitist". If the girls go to public school they will be followed by the Secret Service, the Media and the relentless papparatzi. That entorage makes it unfair to the other students who are trying to get a decent education.
    Perhaps the Obamas could consider an option many parents opt for and have the girls home schooled.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  200. Tino

    Whichever is best for the kids.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  201. Roberta Anthony

    I think the President-Elect and Mrs Obama should send their children to the school that they think would be in their childrens best interest. If the public schools fit them scholastically, fine. If not they should not feel pressured to take others' advice. We, as parents, make our own decisions about our children and they should have the same rights.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  202. Sandra fromTexas

    Private school would probably be easier for the secret service. I believe they have gone to private school all along. It doesn't matter to us.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  203. Byron

    for liberalism's sake.. public school. To put his money where his mouth is.
    For reality's sake.. private school. Probably better for the children of one of the most powerful men in the world.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  204. Jan Davis, Knoxville, TN

    They should definitely attend private schools, #1 for better security/safety and #2 for better education. After teaching in the public schools, I made the decision to send my kids through Catholic schools and it was well worth the extra expense. I'm sure these girls are as bright as their parents and should get the best education possible.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  205. LUCY- ILLINOIS

    If it were my kids, I would pick private, because it might be safer.
    I'm sure that either private or public schools have very good teachers. It will be a hard decision for them to make.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  206. Jim/NC

    Easy decision...private schools. The Obama's have the money and they want a quality education for their children. According to President elect Obama, DC public schools are broken...why send them there? I would not! The public want like it but the Obama's must consider what is best for their children

    November 19, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  207. Deborah from Houston

    Private. The public schools would be a risk in terms of security. It's not a sell out. It's doing what's best for the girls.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  208. Mobius

    Absolutely, positively none of our business.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  209. OBDAG in Appleton, WI

    I would prefer to see the Obama girls go to public school but would completely understand if they decide to send them to private schools. Having lived in DC and closely watching the situation there for a number of years I think I have insights that others may not have. As a matter of fact I even tried to go from uniform to teacher in DC knowing full well the problems I would face. Should they decide to go with public schools it will be a real opportunity to test the No Child Left Behind program. I do agree this is a big decision and I think it best if they elect to go with public rather than private. In any case I hope they are both good students and do well in their studies.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  210. Nicholas in NY

    I think the media blackout on these two young children should begin right now.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  211. Jamie

    Private. Definitely; for their own safety.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  212. Daren

    The Obama children were attending private school before their daddy won the highest office in our government. Why would they switch to public schools now?

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  213. Hart - Fairfax, VA

    It's absurd to believe that the President's daughters would attend any public school, let alone a DC public school. It's neither in the interest of the girls' education nor their security.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  214. Andrew DeFrank

    Hello Jack, I think the Obama's kids should pick Capitol Hill Day School. We have 250 or so kids (yes it is a privite school) I think that the girls would be a great addition to the school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  215. Sindia in Cleveland

    The Obama's should do what's best for their family! It's their parental obligations to make sure their childrend get a good education and they are safe!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  216. Matt Micklavzina

    Who cares what we think? When did we start thinking we should control the private lives of the people who govern for us.

    Let's focus on what really matters: foreign and domestic policy. This drivel on the personal lives of politicians needs to end.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  217. Joe Plumber

    Private School
    Makes life much more easier than being in a public school

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  218. Monica

    They should go to school where their parents decide and it is no one else's business.
    Raleigh, NC

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  219. Linda

    Private, their safety is top priority.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  220. Michael Pawluk

    Rosebbud and radiance should attend public school and maybe in the future consider enrollment in a private institution. Public school will offer them a realistic insight to the world

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  221. roseanna

    Absolutely, private school. They will need all the insulation they can get withall the nut cases out there waiting to pounce and do harm.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  222. Keith in Brooklyn, NY

    Jack,
    it's really none of anyone's business where the Obama children will attend school. Considering that they've been in private school and the security issues involved, continuing in private school is probably a good choice.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  223. Lynda Saint John, NB, Canada

    Private. I'm guessing it would be easier to protect them there, and the secret service may be less of a disruption to a private school than a public school. Remember – it has to be what is better for THEM, not necessarily what the American public would LIKE to see.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  224. Sheriva

    Jack were Rosebud and Radiance goes to school is the business of their parents. They are currently in private school and with the condition of most of DC's school....the choice is obvious.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  225. Andrew

    Sasha and Malia should go to a Private school. I attend a Public School, and let me tell you, were all a bunch of animals.

    Andrew
    Kalamazoo, Michigan

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  226. mary stewart

    not my business or anyone elses......their utmost safety is the key...period

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  227. Alan

    Actually, the Obamas should home school their kids. Why in the world would they send them to either a private or public school and put them in harm's way? It makes no sense. If it were me, I would have my kids home schooled.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  228. Paula

    Public schools were good enough for my successful boys, but my husband isn't President of the United States. With all the nut cases around, I'd send them to private school, closely guarded, and I hope Mrs. Obama does just that. If anybody complains, they're just trying to pick on the new First Family.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  229. Alex from New Jersey

    Some might say that sending them to a pubic school shows faith in our education system and some might say there is better security in a private school. Ultimately, Michelle and Barack Obama will have to do what's right by their kids, not what's right by the country. But if I had to stand in Michelle's high heels, I would send them to a private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  230. Bob from Staten Island NY

    I think Michelle should home school her two girls that way she can teach them to finally be proud of her country.
    Plus it is would keep her busy and stop her from making comments which her husband later regrets.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  231. Lucille Matte

    President Elect Obama's children should go to a PRIVATE school. If people don't get that then they should not be watching the news.

    Key word: President!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  232. Al

    The safety and security of their daughters is "the" most important item. It would be almost impossible to totally secure these children in a public school environment. Their choice is simply that..."their choice" and people should shut up and mind their own business.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  233. S

    They have to attend PRIVATE school!! Their security is #1!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  234. Sandy - Nashville

    It would be nice if they chose public school. When's the last time anyone of prominence or money actually did something positive for public schools – like send their children to them?

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  235. D. Earle

    The Obama children should be sent to private schools because it is easier for the Secret Service to protect them there. Any children in their position could be kidnapped for political reasons, and their safety is important to their parents' ability to do the job voters want them to do.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  236. Kaye Mayers

    It seems only reasonable that precious little Radiance and Rosebud would be more secure in a private school environment. It is no reflection on public school but an important consideration for these two lovely girls.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  237. Pamela Gates

    Of course the Obama children should continue on in another private school, after all they are currently enrolled in a private setting.

    Education has been paramount with both Michelle and Barack and moving their children into the public system would be a step back for them. Add to that the security issue... there should be no doubt that continuing in a private education setting is best option for them.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  238. Erika

    Private

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  239. karon dionne

    Only a parent has the right to dictate where a child goes to school, and knowing the relationship these parents have to their daughters, they will make the decision t;hat best fits their educational needs and foremost their safet;y.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  240. stephen merrill, WI

    Its a no-brainer Jack. The girls should be in a private school so they can be properly protected by the Secret Service. Remember the movie when the daughter of the president was kidnapped by arab extremists?

    Lets not create a situation where the girls are put in harms was and the Mommie and Daddie can rest easily that the girls are safe. I have nothing against publis schools, but the kids of the President should be in a secure environment at all times.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  241. Michelle

    The Obama girls should attend the school that their parents decide is the best fit for them–educationally, socially, emotionally and from a security point. Then the "GAP" (Great American Public) should mind their own business and assume that these two bright, well educated parents have made the best decision they possibly could for their daughters.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  242. Adam J. (Tampa, Fl)

    Afternoon Jack,

    “Rosebud” and “Radius” should most certainly attend public schools. As it is a stereotype that people who make more money send their children to private schools. Obama is taking money from said people, so, lets send the children to the ‘middle class’ school.

    All the best,

    Happy Thanksgiving

    November 19, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  243. Jean

    Home schooling baby! HOME SCHOOLING
    Security baby, Security!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  244. Pat Bass

    I feel that the girls security would be a bigger problem in a public school, as well as a possible distraction for other students. Therefore I would understand if they chose a private school instead. Hernando, Fl.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:17 pm |
  245. Brennan

    The Obama girls deserve an educational experience that promotes cognitive growth with as little distraction as possible. I don't want to see a child influenced by some radical racist parent encourage an act of violence toward the girls. Private school's will give the girls the best chance to stay focused and will greatly reduce the risks in regards to their safety.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  246. Matt from Lawrenceville, Ga

    It's up to Barack and Michelle as parents, not as the President and the First Lady. The girls have attended private school all along. This obviously shows they can afford it out of their own pocket; but if the Obamas' were trying to show a national example, then why not put them into a public school?

    November 19, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  247. Pablo, Charles Town, WV

    A combination of both – a charter school within the White House composed of local students from nearby public schools. Students could be selected through a raffle and/or by merit. That will keep Rosebud and Radiance safe from stalkers, and expose them to somewhat of a culturally diverse student body.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  248. Iam Anthony

    Here’s my question to you: Should the Obama children attend public or private school?

    Answer: Private, for inner security.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  249. Bob

    The kids should attend private schools. Their safety has to be the number one concern. A private school will be much safer.

    Students who attend private schools do not come out less well rounded for the experience. In most cities in the north private parochial provide education to a very significant percentage of the student population and they do just fine.

    Private schools do not produce snobs. They prodcue well educated and well rounded ordinary kids.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  250. John in Santa Barbara, CA

    They must choose the school where their children will get the best possible education. All other arguments are baloney.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  251. Lee

    People on both sides will criticize the Obama family, regardless what their decision ends up being... That said, in the interest of security, I would be inclined to lean towards private schools. I think they can forget the idea of the girls going anywhere without a secret service detail, and it's been said the private school close to the White House has been the choice of many past presidents, so I'm sure they're accustomed to having secret service details on campus.

    Trying to keep track of the girls during the hustle and bustle of a day in a public school would give their secret service detail an absolute fit, I'm sure.

    I can only hope people on both sides of the discussion can agree to respect the Obama family's decision, whatever they decide upon.

    Lee.
    Saint James City, Florida.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  252. Alisa Pontarelli

    Just as I am sure Michelle Obama doesn't know what is best for my children, I would not suggest I know what is best for hers.

    Regardless of who their father is, the girls deserve to be in the educational environment that is best for them, especially given the sacrifices they will certainly make as first children. No one is better qualified to choose that environment than their parents.

    I trust the Obamas' judgement in the matter of educating their children and assume they won't be swayed by public opinion. Let's move on to something that we deserve to have a say in.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  253. Punam from San Francisco

    They should go to Private school. We all know private schools offer a better level of education and supervision for children. The teachers are better paid and actually want to be there.

    The First family in America should always send their kids to our top schools. Why should this black family, in their position even consider public school? ...and why are we even discussing this.

    It's a no brainer Americans, if you don't have send your kids to public school then you don't send them!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  254. Juanita

    I love you, Jack!

    This is a personal decision that the parents of these two beautiful little girls, Sasha and Malia, should make and they should not feel pressure from the public to select a public school. Public schools do not offer the security that will be needed for Sasha and Malia. We are talking about the minor children of our President-Elect and The First Lady (Elect?).

    We should respect their privacy and allow them to make this most important choice of schools. I pray they choose Private School.

    Thank you,

    Juanita G.
    Marietta, GA

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  255. Jamal, Michigan

    People need to understand that this isn't about looking like an elitist or an average american. it is about the those little girls best interests; and i think that sending them to a private school is in there best interest because it would make it easier for the Secrete Service to monitor them. So i say go private.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  256. jay, Edison, NJ

    Jack

    People will always comment no matter what the Obamas select. As a father of 4, my kids went to public school. The parents are the best ones to decide which school serves best the childrens' future. Whichever school – public or private meets the standard by which the President elect and the Future First Lady measure, is the right choice. And we as the public should respect that decision and leave it alone.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  257. Brendan

    Here’s a suggestion: Other than that the Obama girls may be socially deprived, why not hire private instructors to come to the White House to teach them? (I’m sure they’ll have the funds available to do so.) Then, mom won’t have to worry, and the children get the education they deserve/need. Unless mom needs the spotlight.

    Brendan Dube'
    Zanesville, OH

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  258. Kirk in Michigan

    Wherever the teaching quality is higher. A better question, which fewer people are willing to answer, is why does the U.S. have one of the highest spending per student figures in the world but only mediocre results? I would suspect the typical taxpayer has no idea how much of their local tax bill is being wasted on a broken public eduction system.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:19 pm |
  259. Doug from Daytona

    Sadly enough, the truth of our society is that there are those who would do harm to children. Especially the children of the leader of the free world. Their safety is paramount, so private school offers a more controlled environment.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  260. Doris Murray, Ky

    The Obamas should do what they think is best for their kids. If they send them to public school there is sure to be someone to come along and complain because it will no longer be business as usual and they will have to make adjustments. They will not think about the added security their children will have it will become an invasion of their privacy.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  261. Annette Smith

    I believe that Michelle and Barack Obama have the parental interest and intelligence to have their children become Ivy-League successful attending a rotten school. Sadly, their decision should probably be based more on safety than on school quality. The question should probably be put to the Secret Service.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  262. Miss P

    The Obama girls need to be in private school for safety reasons. The are going to brilliant young women no matter where they go because they have brilliant parents who care and are invested in being great parents. The first black president of the US is an awesome achievement but sadly there are racist maniacs who pose a serious threat to the Obama family. Safety first, critics last.

    Murfreesboro, TN

    November 19, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  263. Jahsee, Staten Island NY

    The fact remains that they are the President's daughters. The rules of the "real world" don't apply to them anymore. Even if they went to a public school the security they would recieve it would be hard to tell the difference between private and public when it comes to safety. I believe they will still go to a private school, they aren't going to be used as a PR stunt.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:21 pm |
  264. Allen in Hartwell, GA

    Personally I think a private school makes the most sense for a lot of reasons, but ultimately Barack and Michelle are left with the final decision.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:21 pm |
  265. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    Ideally, it would be nice if they could finish the school year in Chicago with their grandmother, but I know Michelle Obama wouldn't want to be away from them. Bess Truman didn't always stay at the White House. If they have to switch schools in the middle of the year, I would send them to another private school. I had to change schools and the books they were using at the new school were the same books I had the year before. It was great and easy, but it was also a wasted year. Keep them private.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:22 pm |
  266. Kyle (Dallas)

    They've been going to private schools, so they should continue going to private schools, especially since their father is the president of the United States. The Obamas need to remember that their children's education is most important, and they should not worry about trying to send some "message" to the American people. We shouldn't even be discussing this.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:22 pm |
  267. Ross

    The Obama's can send their girls where they want...but I do think that the campuses of private schools are a bit easier to secure from the psychos and private schools might comply with the secret service easier. The food is probably better too!

    Ross, Los Angeles

    November 19, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  268. edie, nj

    president-elect or not, its the parents decision! it's really none of our business.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  269. janice port republic nj

    My family and I are proud products of a great public school system; college included. However, we are not high profile figures and security was not an issue. I think they need to go to private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  270. David

    I believe Barack and Michelle Obama will do what they believe is in the best interests of their two girls and their education. It is their choice to make and they will make it regardless of those who will second guess and find fault. In this day and age I would defer to those that will be responsible the the childrens safety, that being the Secret Service, as long as it succeeds in the ultimate goal of the girls getting a good education in the completely unique environment that their fathers position places them. I wish the Obamas good luck, they will make the right choice.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  271. Mary Collins Newport, OR

    First Lady Obama, is a very grand lady. I know she will do what is best for her girls. while private schools do prove the very best education, they tend to teach children a seperation from the public educated children. Having them think they are above those of low standard. The Obama's have really raised their girls to be grounded not elite standard.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  272. Steve Peach - Indiana

    It's really none of our business Jack, as long as where ever they go they are safe and comfortable.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  273. Dennis -oak hill fl

    private school should be safer for the children and the job of gaurding them less stressfull ,I believe the children of an elected president deserve every measure we can take to make their lives safe and happy ,Thanks you !!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  274. Evan, NC

    Let me guess, if they choose private school, they will be viewed as Elitest who don't believe a public education is good enough. If they choose public school they will be viewed as being inconsiderate to other families who are not interested in their school being swamped with the constant media attention and security presence. Hey, let them satisfy everyones ridiculous interest on this issue....send one to private and the other to public...news story over right? Yeah, right!!!!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  275. Don from Portland

    I am a strong supporter of public schools. My four children went to public schools and universities. But, I believe the choice of public or private should be the last consideration. The girls should go where ever their parents believe they will be safest. And I would recommend their parents give the opinion of the secret service their highest consideration, temper their bias toward public schools, and totally ignore political considerations or the thought that they are obligated to to set an example. Whenever my children complained about my cautious nature I asked them a simple question, "What is my number one job?" They knew the answer was, "To keep us safe." End of discussion.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:24 pm |
  276. Maria Vazquez

    I thought it was rather ridiculous when Michele decided to take those girls the next day of the election to school. She is jeopardizing their security and needs to realize that they will need to adapt to a new way of living. Homeschooling is always availble. I feel for this family's security but they need to make choices that will not jeopardize our country. I'm sorry to say it's not about the girls anymore, sooo many citizens are involved in their decisions.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:25 pm |
  277. Donna Colorado Springs,Co

    Public schoold would show more of a commonality with the rest of us, but for security reasons, I think that a private school would be the more prudent choice simply for safety of the girls.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:25 pm |
  278. BETTIE in North Carolina

    The Obama children, Radiance and Rosebud,should not attend public school. They should remain with what they are more accustomed to doing. Public schools are in total disarray in many ways..drugs,guns,violence etc. All that and more keep the learning process at a minimum. There is no reason why the girls have to adjust to more than is necessary. Leaving their home, school and friends behind are big changes. Why make it harder for them as well as the Secret Servive by placing them in public school? Attending private school in Washington will more than likely help them to adjust to everything else more smoothly. Having grandma move with them will be in their best interest too! Best of luck to them!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  279. Toni Abruzzo-Ramirez

    We live in a crazy world. Those children need to be protected. That will never happen in a public school. It is not fair to them but I would like to see them home schooled.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  280. Denise Groves

    of course they will be assigned to a private school. These are the "First Kids" in the nation. They cannot just attend a regular school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  281. Scott Bray

    Barack Obama will be stepping into one of the biggest messes an incoming President has ever had to take on my lifetime. The decision can only be based on what is best for the girls from a security standpoint. If the Secret Service says private school then private school is must be. Anyone who criticizes that choice or says it represents a lack of support for the public school system is being arrogantly selfish and shortsighted.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  282. Joyce Mitchell

    I believe Pres.-Elect Obama supports the Public School system with all his heart, but these darling babes are not in politics. For the girl's, their parents and the Secret Service, I think a Private School would be much better.

    Granite City, IL

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  283. Jan Gibson

    With an outstanding mother like Michele, the Obama daughters should be homeschooled. They can't get any better than that. What a gift.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:29 pm |
  284. Loretta

    Doesn't matter where Malia and Sasha go to school, what is important is the surveillance given these two children 24 hrs. a day.
    There have been so many frightening threats already against Barack Obama even before he has taken the oath of office, and now Bin Laden's second in command, al Zawahri has used some ugly language condemning our soon to be 44th president.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  285. Jason

    Public school. It will give him all the more reason to fix them.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:31 pm |
  286. David in San Diego

    Private schools–moving to DC shouldn't require the Obamas to change how they want to educate their kids. And the kids' safety is easier to assure at a private school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  287. Donald in CA

    Private school is the way to go. It would be to much of
    a distraction at a public school.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  288. Alan, Minnesota

    I think as far as personal security and quality of education delivered, there is really only one best choice: they should be home schooled. There must be a room there in the White House where they could set up some desks.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:33 pm |
  289. bob in Arkansas

    I would like to see the kids either home schooled or in a private school for security reasons.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:34 pm |
  290. STAN - IL.

    Whichever has the best security and best teachers.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  291. Shannon wa st

    As a parent. Only a parent should decide what is best for their children. Not the american public...

    November 19, 2008 at 4:38 pm |
  292. Thom Richer

    Hmmm, let's see. Underfunded, understaffed, unqualified teachers, overcrowded classroom, failing infra-structure public school or an up to date, cream of the crop teachers, small class sized, well funded, and safe environment school? Damn! This is a tough one. When do I have to decide?

    Thom
    Negaunee, MI

    November 19, 2008 at 4:39 pm |
  293. Adena from Texas

    PRIVATE all the way! Safety is a must with all the crazies out here!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:39 pm |
  294. Michael in Acushnet, MA

    Hello Mr. Cafferty,

    If anyone wishes to allow their children to be used as symbols to satisfy the unsatisfiable diverse ulterior motives of 300,000,000 Americans, then they should run for president, get elected, and use their own children as pawns. The Obamas made their best judgment years ago when they sent their children to private school. No good parent would now "change" from a hopefully very thoughtful choice to please others for politics or any other reason.

    Sincerely,

    Michael

    November 19, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  295. Travis U

    I say that there is a key difference between private and public. Private would give them the security they may need, due to their father being the first African American president and already getting hatred from Al Qaeda. But one thing private won't give them is a normal education.
    Public will give them a more normal education, but may not be as safe as they need. Either way the media will hound any decision they make and I believe that Michelle and Barack Obama will make a good decision for their children. I personally believe life in a public school will be easier for them to live a more normal life. But in the end it's the Obama's decision.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  296. Debra Rich, Washington, DC

    Jack,
    As a resident of Washington, DC; I am well award of the shape of our public schools. This issue has placed a spotlight on our schools, now maybe we can get the help our schools need. But as for the Obama girls they need they the security of a private school. They are the first family; and the private schools the Obamas are considering really are fortresses when it come to the protection of the children of famous people. Let's face it, the girls need all the protection they can get because of who they are.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  297. Bill in Jefferson Hills, PA

    No matter which type of school is chosen, the presence of the Obama children will alter the lives of the other students, the teachers and school administrators. Even the neighborhood that the school is situated in will be greatly affected.

    Having said all that, I think it best if the girls attend a private school where perhaps the children of other government officials are enrolled. Those children have had to cope with being uprooted and have experience with adjusting to new situations and having to make new friends at such a young age.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  298. Melanie, Germany

    Simple : Private. If they go to a public school, even the secret service won't be able to stop the bullying.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  299. Katherine, Fairfax VA

    I just really hope that they get a marvelous education.
    No matter where it is, I hope that they can embrace knowledge and work to make Earth a better and more beautiful place 😀

    November 19, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  300. RobertD

    I err on the side of security and this should be a private decision and what is best for the children.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  301. Kate

    Jack, there ar only two people whose opinion really matters on this – Michelle and Barak Obama. Let's all leave them alone to make the decsion they onsider best for their daughters.

    Kate,, Saratoga Springs NY

    November 19, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  302. Cynthia (Y-town, Ohio)

    The bottom line is what is best for the girls. They are already enrolled in a private school and the transition would be a little easier from private to private vs private to public. The girls have more than enough to process: moving from state to state, house to house, and making new friends. It's a no brainer to send them to a private school. Americans and Non-Americans can understand the decision of what is in the best interest of the children. Let the people be more involved with choosing a pet for them not their education!!!

    November 19, 2008 at 4:56 pm |
  303. Dave Arnholt

    They should go to a private school. All the security will be a distraction to the other children. Much of that can be tailored to fit into a private school enviornment.

    November 19, 2008 at 4:57 pm |