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Live viewing of Obama speech to students banned at Becker School District

Live viewing of Obama speech banned at Becker School District
By Eric Black

As you’ve heard, Pres. Obama is offering a speech to students of the nation’s school on Tuesday, backed by curricular materials from the Department of Education, and Obama dislikers are complaining loudly that they don’t want the schools to show it. The early coverage that I’ve seen so far says that Minnesota school districts are planning to show it or leave it up to individual teachers, but apparently not in Becker, Minn.

Below is an mail sent out by the Suprerintendent of the Becker School District alerting the faculty not to have their classes watch the Obama speech, at least not on Tuesday and after parents have had a chance to indicate whether they are willing to have their kids see it.

I’m just going to pass the full e-mail along without comment from me and see what you think about it.

Dear Staff,

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A late notice has arrived that President Obama will be addressing the nation’s school children at 11:00 a.m.  Tuesday, Sept. 8th and while I welcome any public figures effort to inspire our children to study hard and do well in school, the political climate of the nation, and  based on the phone calls I have received the community, is such that not everyone is in support of the President’s well meaning intentions.  So please be informed of the district’s position on the matter below.  We all need to be on the same page on this.

The District Position on the Presidential Address:

The address will be taped and made available to buildings for showing at the appropriate time and after parents have been informed and offered and opportunity to opt out.

Rationale:

1.  Late notice makes preparation and parent notification difficult
2.  Broadcast time is during lunch hours creating a logistical problem
3.  This is, unfortunately, a politically charged event and without the aforementioned parent notification we could be alienating some parents and children.  Not the way we want to start the new school year.