NBC News Plans Third-Annual ‘Education Nation’

By Merrill Knox 

NBC News has announced plans for this year’s third-annual “Education Nation.” The 2012 events will include a city tour this Spring and a national summit in New York City this Fall to be covered across all platforms of NBC News.

“‘Education Nation’ has become one of the biggest and most important projects that we do at NBC News,” president Steve Capus said in a statement. “We believe journalism should be relevant, and education is about as relevant as it gets.”

The 2012 city tour will stop in Denver (April 15-16), Atlanta (May 6-7 and Miami (May 20-21). The New York City summit will be held  September 23-25. Last Fall, Capus told TVNewser, “I feel like we’re succeeding in getting that word out — that this is something we’re serious about doing, and that we’re going to keep doing it.”

NBC’s press release is after the jump.

Includes third-annual national summit from Sept. 23-25 and on-the-road city tour  

Network partners with MSNBC, Telemundo, owned and affiliate stations

NEW YORK, NY—March 6, 2012— NBC News President Steve Capus announced today the network’s plans for “Education Nation” in 2012. Heading into its third year, the “Education Nation” initiative will employ all platforms of NBC News— including MSNBC, programs like “NBC Nightly News,” “Today,” “Rock Center,” and “Meet the Press,” digital properties such as msnbc.com and EducationNation.com, and live events across the country—in a continued effort to shine a spotlight on the challenges, potential solutions and innovations spanning today’s education landscape. In 2012, “Education Nation” will deepen public engagement in a solutions-focused discussion on improving student achievement and preparedness for the workforce— giving special attention to innovation and technology. 

“’Education Nation’ has become one of the biggest and most important projects that we do at NBC News,” said Capus. “We believe that journalism should be relevant, and education is about as relevant as it gets—affecting not just students and families, but our economy, job market and competitiveness as a nation. This is why we have and will continue to dedicate our time and resources to covering education.”

The centerpiece of “Education Nation” 2012 will be the national summit in New York City from Sept. 23-25, when once again, NBC News will convene policymakers, elected officials, teachers, parents, thought leaders, educators, members of the business community and engaged citizens in a national discussion about education. Built around solutions, the 2012 “Education Nation” summit will showcase real-life examples of communities and classrooms that are closing the skills gap and educating students so they can compete for the jobs of the future. The event will be held in a new venue to be announced later this spring.

In addition to the summit, the network is also continuing “Education Nation On-The-Road.” Making stops in Denver (April 15-16), Atlanta (May 6-7) and Miami (May 20-21), the NBC News team will host a series of panels and events involving NBC News anchors and correspondents, local leaders, officials, educators, parents, and students. NBC News is partnering with MSNBC, its affiliate stations— KUSA in Denver and WXIA in Atlanta— as well as its owned station NBC 6 in Miami, to create a forum in each city for sharing information, exchanging ideas and inspiring change. The Telemundo network and its local affiliate, WSCV will also be supporting the local tour stop in Miami, as well as KDEN in Denver.

“Education Nation On-The-Road” will feature a Teacher Town Hall meeting in each city, which will be moderated by NBC News and the local stations, and bring local teachers together in a unique educator-only forum to discuss what works in the classroom and highlight the challenges of today’s education system. Each tour stop will also include a “Job One” panel discussion moderated by NBC News that will convene high-profile regional business leaders, CEOs and thought leaders to focus on how to prepare America’s students to compete in today’s global economy.

During each week of “Education Nation On-The-Road,” NBC News and Teleumundo owned and affiliate stations will air local education stories and provide coverage of the “Education Nation” events. In addition, NBC News will air education reports during the week on “Today,” “NBC Nightly News,” and MSNBC. Online, EducationNation.com will host information on all local events.

Education Nation will also participate in two other major influential events this year: The NewSchools-Aspen Institute Summit on Education Innovation on May 2, in partnership with NewSchools Venture and the Aspen Institute, and the Aspen Ideas Festival from June 27- July 3, produced by the Aspen Institute and The Atlantic.

Last year’s “Education Nation” summit hosted over 380 teachers, and an additional 450 attendees that included parents, students, educators, business leaders, mayors, governors, policymakers, philanthropists and citizens, for over 20 sessions focused on improving education in America. In addition, over 8,200 people visited the “Education Nation Experience” exhibit from Sept. 23-27, engaging with video and interactive tools to explore the skills, knowledge and training required to succeed in the 21st Century.

In addition, from Sept. 23-30, 2011, millions of viewers nationwide watched over 1,800 education reports that aired on NBC News, NBC affiliate stations and fellow NBCUniversal networks as part of the 2011 “Education Nation” initiative. “Education Nation” also helped to drive the national conversation around education online—reaching millions of people on Twitter, Facebook and NBCU’s digital platforms: msnbc.com, EducationNation.com, TODAY.com and iVillage.com.

About “Education Nation”
“Education Nation” seeks to create a thoughtful, well-informed dialogue with policymakers, thought-leaders, educators, parents and the public, in pursuit of the shared goal of providing every American with an opportunity to achieve the best education in the world. These discussions cover the challenges, potential solutions and innovations spanning the education landscape. By providing quality information to the public, NBC News hopes to educate Americans so they can make decisions about how best to improve our education system both in the near and long terms, and to shine a spotlight on one of the most urgent national issues of our time.