Will President Barack Obama be able to take a few minutes out of his hectic fundraising schedule to grant multiple requests from students by visiting an elementary school named in his honor?
Of course not. Instead, he’ll be too busy schmoozing with well-heeled Democrats at a dinner that costs as much as $5,000 per person to attend.
The stiffed school is Barack Obama Elementary School in Hempstead, Long Island — just a few minutes outside of Queens (and even fewer minutes if your limo doesn’t need to fight traffic).
About three weeks ago, officials at the grade school sent their third official request asking President Obama to stop by, the New York Post reports.
“Your platform on education has acted as a true inspiration for us, and it would mean the world to our students to meet the incredible leader after whom our school is named,” wrote local board of education president Lamont E. Johnson in a Sept. 26. letter to the president.
“In the coming days you will be receiving hundreds of letters from the children wishing to see you,” the board president added.
In turn, those students, the majority of whom are black and Hispanic, have been sending letters to the White House pleading with the President to give them a few minutes of his time this election season.
The school has been called Barack Obama Elementary School for six years. Back in the halcyon days of hope and change just after Obama was elected to his first term, the Hempstead Union Free School District board voted unanimously to change the name. Before that, it had been Ludlum Elementary School.
The Obama administration also rebuffed the school in 2012 when the President was debating Mitt Romney at nearby Hofstra University. That time, the young children who attend the school stood outside, gazing up at his helicopter as it passed overhead — in the faint hope that it might make a surprise landing in the parking lot.
New York Gov. David Paterson, a Democrat who grew up in Hempstead, advised school officials to abandon hope. There’s fundraising going on, after all.
Students and teachers are still holding out for the possibility of a surprise visit, though.
“I tweeted. I’ve emailed,” fifth-grade teacher Rosetta Langlois told the Post. “I’ve done everything to try to get him to come.”
The $5,000-a-plate fundraiser which Obama will attend will take place at the Garden City Hotel, an “elegant luxury hotel featuring posh rooms, an indoor pool and refined dining in a historic setting,” according to Google.
Obama hasn’t had the best luck with schools named in his honor. In 2013, for example, a seventh-grade boy was allegedly raped by another male student during gym class at Barack Obama Global Preparation Academy in Los Angeles. (RELATED: Seventh-Grade Boy Allegedly Raped During Gym Class At Barack Obama Prep)
Last month, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that that the city had abandoned plans to name a glitzy, new selective enrollment high school after the president. (RELATED: SECOND CITY SNUB! Mayor Rahm Quashes Plan To Name $60 Million High School After Obama)
In better news for Obama, a school district in the suburbs of Chicago recently announced plans to rename a middle school in his in honor and a second middle school in honor of first lady Michelle Obama. (RELATED: Michelle Obama Exalted For Matrimonial Achievement With School Named In Her Honor)