Skip to comments.'Stunned' superintendent reacts to NBC "Today Show" segment claiming Decatur (AL) 'has bad schools'
Posted on 09/21/2007 12:04:22 PM PDT by panzer_grey
'Stunned' superintendent reacts to national TV segment saying Decatur 'has bad schools'
By Bayne Hughes firstname.lastname@example.org · 340-2432
Superintendent Sam Houston issued a "y'all come" invitation to the New York studios of the "Today Show" after a segment Thursday morning claimed that Decatur "has bad schools."
Houston sent a letter to "Today Show" officials inviting them to see Decatur's education status. The letter is in response to a statement correspondent Barbara Corcoran made.
In a comparison of $500,000 real estate, she said a buyer could buy a two-bedroom townhouse in a gated community in Tucson, Ariz., or a four-bedroom, 3,800-square-foot house on 111/2 acres with a pond and pool in Decatur. (The home in question is just outside the city limits.)
Corcoran then ended her statement to host Matt Lauer, "What you don't get is good schools. They've got a bad school system. But taxes are only $1,000 a year."
In his letter to "Today Show" Executive Producer Jim Bell, Houston said he was "stunned" to see the segment and that he thinks Corcoran commented incorrectly on his school system.
"You will find a community that values public education and invests in it," Houston writes. "Our teachers and administrators are well trained and highly committed. Our parents are supportive and involved."
Writer-researcher Jennifer Margulis wrote the copy for Corcoran. She told The Daily that she researched Decatur's test scores because the home listing shows it as being in Decatur.
ABC Realty agent Theresa Simon said the Day Road home is not in the city limits. The home is in the Danville schools district in the Morgan County school system.
(Excerpt) Read more at decaturdaily.com ...
“Bad schools” is code for a large percentage of minority students around here. Is it the same there?
Any idea what really chaps Corcoran's behind? Why the taxes of course. The very idea people only pay $1000 a year. They should be ashamed!!!
They're 3 to 4% below the average. Call out the swat team Matt...
No. Its code for the reporter and the Today Show staff being militantly ignorant. Its a real outrage, the Today Show did virtually no research about Decatur City Schools. But, somehow the woman reporter felt very comfortable making the statement.
I grew up about 30 miles from Decatur. Most folks frowned on the town...not necessarily a bad place to go...but if you compared against Florence, Huntsville or Athens...Decatur came after them. No one really worked on the infrastructure of the town, and in the 1980s when I last drove through the area...it still looked like 1950 (perhaps not a bad thing). The interesting thing is that housing there still holds steady with a decent house going for $80k and you can own a really great house for $120k.
It’s not the schools, it’s the families. Money for schools means nothing unless the family is there for the students. Fear from Dad is a great motivator to do well in school.
I want to be dictator-POTUS for a week.
On a Monday I would “nationalize” ABC, CBS and NBC. By Wednesday each would have a new board of directors and have picked, out of a hat, one of three cities to which to relocate their headquarters and their HQ-network studios (morning shows and nightly news), of either Chicago, Dallas or Atlanta. On Friday morning each would be resold to the public as new IPOs, recouping the four day cost of “nationalizing” them. Maybe we-d actually start to have “national” broadcast networks, instead of north-east liberal-orthodoxy networks.
Barbara Corcoran is a NUT AIRHEAD!!!
A quick web search showed two high schools in the city system, one about 60% white, one about 61%. (33 and 31% Black, respectively). They both did pretty well on the standard state test. Tucson Unified has much higer minority percentages. So I don’t think the network was trying to use racial code words.
The Arizona schools do seem to lag on on the standardized tests, so it looks like the folks in Alabama have a legitimate complaint.
Database for comparing schools can be found here: