Raycom Defends Educational Sabrina


Raycom has officially asked the FCC to deny the United Church of Christ's challenge to its TV station license.

The FCC requires TV stations to provide at least three hours a week of educational/informational programming as one of the costs of keeping their license. UCC said Raycom's airing of animated series, Sabrina, did not qualify as core educational programming, as Raycom asserted, and challenged the station license late last month.

The station countered in its FCC filing that the complaint was simply the UCC trying to replace the station's programming choices with its own.

WUAB said that the show "was specifically designed by a nationally recognized educational expert with the significant purpose of educating and informing children, as required by the Act and the Commission."

"The producers provided WUAB with a detailed curriculum statement that described the program’s mission, concepts, approach, and educational or informational goal of each episode. The expert certified that the program complied with the Act and the Commission’s rules."

WUAB is counting on Sabrina distributor DIC Entertainment, which supplies what it markets as an academic-vetted, FCC-friendly category of "edutainment" shows to hundreds of TV stations.

DIC Chairman Andy Heyward has repeatedly defended his shows from critics who suggest they do not meet the FCC's definition of educational or informational.Other shows in the block include Strawberry Shortcake, Where On Earth Is Carmen San Diego?, Liberty's Kids, Madeline and Archie's Weird Mysteries.