This plaque.

Where George W. Bush Read "The Pet Goat" on 9/11

Field review by the editors.

Sarasota, Florida

President Bush sat in a second grade classroom, reading along with the students "The Pet Goat" from the book Reading Mastery II, just after terrorists flew two airliners into the World Trade Center on the morning of September 11, 2001. A plaque outside Room 301 marks the spot for posterity, and the school's media center displays Bush's copy of the book.

Critics lambasted Bush for dithering -- he knew the attacks had occurred, but sat there for almost ten minutes -- while defenders claimed that Bush didn't have enough information to do anything differently and wanted to project a sense of calm, not panic. The school's principal and the students in the classroom later said that they felt that Bush did the right thing.

My Pet Goat is in Storybook 1.

The author of The Pet Goat, a formerly anonymous education professor name Siegfried "Zig" Engelmann, was amazed at the attention that it brought to his work.

Bush's appearance in the classroom was meant to promote his proposed "No Child Left Behind" Act. The legislation became law the following year, and it was eventually commemorated with a bronze statue, but at a school in Ohio.

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Where George W. Bush Read "The Pet Goat" on 9/11

Emma E. Booker Elementary School

Address:
2350 Doctor Martin Luther King Way, Sarasota, FL
Directions:
Between Newtown Blvd. and Chilk Ave. A busy school, not a true tourist attraction, so please call ahead if you want to see the Bush tributes.
Phone:
941-361-6480
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