There has been a lot of buzz lately about the public school system in America. A recent documentary called Waiting for Superman highlights the story of five students who attend public schools, yet are trying to attend a special charter school.
After watching Waiting for Superman, President Obama decided to meet with the students featured in the film he called “powerful and heartbreaking” in an interview with the Today Show.
President Obama talked about his daughters’ private school education during that same interview, and he has drawn some criticism for stating that they would not get as good an education if they were attending public school.
The meeting with the students was done out of the spotlight and without a lot of press. The students, Francisco, Bianca, Daisy, Emily and Anthony, were welcomed to the White House on October 11, 2010 to meet with the President.
The film Waiting for Superman comes down on the public school system, criticizing teacher unions and giving the impression that the only way children attending public school can get a quality education is through charter schools. The facts show that charter schools, as a whole, don’t perform better than district schools- some even perform worse.
The director of Waiting for Superman happens to be Davis Guggenheim, who also directed An Inconvenient Truth. Some have criticized the film for simply bashing teacher unions instead of highlighting the work they do to help children. Charter schools typically admit students based on a lottery system, so the ability to get in is based totally on chance.