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Decatur prepares for a visit from the President

7:54 PM, Feb 12, 2013   |    comments
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President Barack Obama before a joint session of Congress (USA Today)

DECATUR, Ga. -- Preparations are underway to welcome President Barack Obama to Decatur, but the exact subject of his talk there will be a bit of a mystery until after tonight's State of the Union address.

At the Decatur Recreation Center, representatives from the White House roam the halls as employees decorate the gym.

"I've been in the building 19 years and never had a President in this building," said city employee Greg White. "We're excited about the opportunity."

It is clear education will be on the mind of the President when he visits Decatur. At the College Heights Early Childhood Learning Center, vehicles with tinted windows and government tags stop by in anticipation of Mr. Obama's visit there.

Parents call it a rare treat for a unique school.

"It's all about how you nurture the child from the beginning," said parent Cynthia Alridge. "It's a wonderful model for that."

The President will stop by one of two centers in Decatur where the learning starts shortly after birth.

Educators across the country are anticipating that Mr. Obama will announce a plan to expand early childhood education.

A Republican Dekalb County lawmaker says its one Obama initiative he can applaud.

"I don't get many opportunities to support the President," said State Senator Fran Millar of Dunwoody. "In this particular case I think he's right on. It's very important."

Neighbors around to school and recreation center are starting to notice all of the "no parking" signs that will keep their cars off the streets come Thursday.

It will no doubt disrupt life here.

"I don't think it's going to be off the chain or anything, and if it is people are chill enough to get around it," said Deeds Davis.

"It's worth it," said Spencer Pierce.

The President will visit North Carolina prior to his trip to Georgia.

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