Nearly two weeks after Samantha Pawlucy wore a pink Romney/Ryan T-shirt to school and started a political maelstrom, she got a call from the GOP presidential candidate himself.

The 16-year-old wasn't home when the phone rang. She was on her way back to Port Richmond on Wednesday night from the family's tae kwon do school in Horsham.

It was Samantha's mother, Kristine, who talked to Romney. Richard Pawlucy said his wife told him the banter was as easy as talking to a neighbor.

Romney called the family to thank Samantha for standing up for herself and to see how they were doing.

Richard Pawlucy said he was to blame for his daughter's missing the call. He said the family knew to expect it a few hours in advance, but he "totally forgot" and took Samantha to the martial arts school.

News of Romney's call was first reported Wednesday night on the website

Kate Meriwether, spokeswoman for the Romney campaign in Pennsylvania, confirmed the call by e-mail Thursday but declined to provide details.

Samantha Pawlucy made headlines last week when she accused her geometry teacher at Charles Carroll High School of publicly humiliating her for wearing the partisan shirt to school on dress-down day on Sept. 28. The family said their daughter would no longer attend the school.

Richard Pawlucy said he hoped to see her in a school Monday. The family has settled on a list of around five schools to look into, he said, with the help of State Rep. John Taylor (R., Phila.)

Taylor has said his role is to facilitate conversation. Because charter schools can have long waiting lists that make them difficult to get into, Richard Pawlucy said he had changed his original stance and was willing to consider public schools.

"We're going to do a lot of research on the public schools. We can't rule them out, because the charter schools are hard [to get into]," he said. "Safety's No. 1 with her, but she still has to get her education."

Carroll High geometry teacher Lynette Gaymon has not returned to the school; she awaits the results of a district investigation and hearing.