First lady Michelle Obama’s request to speak at a Chesterfield County elementary school, while on the campaign trail in Virginia, was rejected by the school officials, citing that it went against school policy.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that the Chesterfield school officials refused to discuss the request made by the Obama campaign.
However, James Holland, a Dale District Supervisor, and the only Democrat on the five-member Chesterfield board said, “I do believe and think that Mrs. Obama, the first lady, should be allowed to attend a Chesterfield school.” He continued, “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.”
The Obama campaign in a released statement said that the campaign considers a wide range of locations to when planning its events and the school was among the possible locations, however, the campaign decided on CenterStage theater as the preferred location to hold their event.
In a matter of weeks, the Obama campaign has faced two rejections in Virginia, with the first just a few weeks ago, when University of Virginia refused the president’s campaign from holding an event at one of their outdoor venues at the Charlottesville campus.
University of Virginia officials said allowing the event to be held at the venue would have led to the closing of other facilities and disruption of classes, on only the second day of the semester.
The Dispatch also reported a statement from Tim Bullis, the school division’s community relations director, who wrote, “If a political campaign were to inquire about the use of a school facility during the school day, the campaign would be referred to a School Board Policy 6100, which prohibits the use of school facilities during the school day for political purposes.”