In this morning's Star Tribune, the fine "journalists" over there took Governor Pawlenty to task for playing an active roll in selecting the best possible educational path for his oldest daughter.
Here is the opening line of this breaking news (assume drum roll here):
And that is what the entire story is about. (I apologize profusely for including a link to it).
Gov. Tim Pawlenty, a key player in setting policy for Minnesota public schools and allocating billions of dollars for public education, has chosen private school for one of his daughters.
In other breaking news, the fine "journalists" at the Star Tribune have learned.
--"Gov. Pawlenty, who governs a state with excessively generous social welfare programs, has a job and is not on a single public assistance program."
--"Gov. Pawlenty, who works in an office with a state-paid photocopy machine, asked his wife to go to Kinkos to print birthday invitations."
--"Gov. Pawlenty, who oversees the allocation of billions of dollars to promote Minnesota tourism, took his family to Disney Land."
In all seriousness, the Trib should be embarrassed that it allowed any ink to be spilled to print such a nonsensical and irrelevant story.
One of the greatest issues facing education today is a lack of parental involvement. It is demonstrably true, that kids who have involved parents do better in school.
And we, as a people, should encourage the kind of involvement that we see from the Governor of Minnesota (a busy guy), in the education of his own daughters.
There is nothing inherently noble about sending ones child to a public school versus a private school, or vice versa.
We have been blessed in Minnesota to have a pretty good mix (we have some work to do yet) of public, private, charter and home-school "institutions" of education in which parents can pick which one best fits the needs of their child, their family, and their community (believe it or not, where the Star Tribune thinks a child should attend is way down the priority list).
But regardless of the intent of the "journalists" at the Trib, an important point does come across in the story.
Governor Pawlenty places a high value on education, and part of his tenure as Governor is defined by making schools accountable to parents and kids so that all of our schools (public, private and otherwise) are providing a world class education.