President Barack Obama will make his annual Back-to-School speech at Philadelphia’s Julia R. Masterman school next Tuesday.

KYW’s Pat Loeb reports the White House announced the selection of Masterman on Thursday.

school 11 Obama Chooses Phila. School for Speech SiteSuperintendent Arlene Ackerman says she’s not sure why the White House chose the magnet school, though she says there are many good reasons:

“It’s a great school, it’s got great young people there, and a great staff.”

Ackerman says she was thrilled by the decision and plans to make the speech available, live, to every school in the district.

Last year’s speech, in which the president encouraged students to study hard, stay in school, and be responsible, was criticized by conservative pundits, who urged schools not to show it to students.

Ackerman says she has no qualms about the president’s message:

“I absolutely see this as an opportunity for our young people.  He’s a great role model: he’s President of the United States of America, the greatest country in the world.”

Ackerman notes the district has already hosted the first lady so she’s confident security measures won’t be too disruptive.

(Photo: Phila. Schools)

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