He wouldn’t be boring. How about Barack Obama as your high school graduation speaker this spring?
Normally, I would think that schools would be thrilled at the thought of having the president of the United States rather than the president of the local Ford dealership speak at commencement, but recall what happened the last time Obama wanted to speak to students.
Some schools either opted out of showing the September speech that Obama gave to encourage kids to stay in school or sent out permission forms in reaction to parents who were concerned that the speech would advance a political agenda.
According to the White House, Obama and the Education Department are giving public high schools the opportunity to compete to have the president speak at their commencement ceremony this spring.
According to the official release:
The White House and the Department of Education have announced a new Race to the Top High School Commencement Challenge and are inviting public schools across the country to compete to have President Obama speak at their graduation. At the beginning of the school year, the President encouraged students across the country to take responsibility for their education, study hard and graduate from high school. The Race to the Top High School Commencement challenge encourages schools to show how they are making great strides on personal responsibility, academic excellence and college readiness.
Applications must be completed by students and submitted by a high school’s Principal using the Commencement Challenge Application Form no later than Monday, March 15th at 11:59 pm EST. Each school may submit only one application and high schools must be public to apply. Following the application deadline, six finalists will be selected by the White House and Department of Education. These schools will then be featured on the White House website and the public will have an opportunity to vote for the three schools they think best meet the President’s goal. The President will select a national winner from these three finalists and visit the winning high school to deliver the commencement address to the class of 2010.
The application’s four essay questions focus on demonstrating how the school is helping prepare students to meet the President’s 2020 goal of having the highest proportion of college graduates in the world. Applications will be judged based on the school’s performance and dedication to providing students an excellent education that will prepare them to graduate ready for college and career choices. Each question must be answered in full to qualify and data that substantiates each answer is strongly encouraged.
I think it would be great to have the president speak at a Georgia high school. I hope my local school will join the competition. I bet some of you are going to disagree.