First Lady Michelle Obama had sought to speak at a Chesterfield County elementary school during her campaign swing through Virginia today, but county school leaders rejected her request, citing school policy, a Chesterfield supervisor has confirmed.
“I do believe and think that Mrs. Obama, the first lady, should be allowed to attend a Chesterfield school,” said Dale District Supervisor Jim Holland, who confirmed the Obama campaign request. “I know it’s not school policy. However, I just do not agree with that, because I think it’s an honor for the first lady to visit a school. That’s just my personal opinion as supervisor.”
Chesterfield schools officials refused to discuss the Obama campaign’s request or even confirm whether a request had been made. School system spokesman Shawn Smith did not reply to two email inquiries about the matter Wednesday until after the Times-Dispatch contacted School Board Chairman Patricia M. Carpenter.
“We respectfully decline to comment,” Smith said in an email.
Holland, the only Democrat on the five-member Chesterfield board, was unaware of the Obama campaign request until contacted by a reporter. He then confirmed it after contacting the county administration.