The Ticker: Education Nation, Viral O’Brien, Romney’s ‘View’

By Merrill Knox 

  • NBC News has fleshed out the schedule for the annual Education Nation summit, which will kick off  Sunday. Former Secy. of State Condoleeza Rice and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush will both participate. The summit will also feature interviews with Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. (Full release from NBC after the jump.)
  • CNN’s Soledad O’Brien talks with the Washington Post‘s Erik Wemple about what gives an interview the potential to go viral. “Any time when you have an issue when you’re going to put someone’s feet to the fire, I think that’s what people are interested in,” the “Starting Point” anchor said.


NEW YORK, NY– Sept. 19, 2012– NBC News released today the agenda and list of confirmed participants for the 2012 “Education Nation” Summit from Sept. 23-25 at The New York Public Library. Newly released sessions include a discussion on education as a national security risk with Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, a taped interview with President Obama on his plans for education, a session on gaming as a learning method, an in-depth look at the skills gap between available jobs and the unemployed, a roundtable with CEOs from top U.S. companies on how business visionaries are addressing our education challenges, a session on teachers’ unions in the 21st century, a convening of the nation’s current and former U.S. Secretaries of Education, and more.Below is an abbreviated agenda and list of participants. For more information on timing and updates to the schedule, visit, September 23Student Town Hall on MSNBC, moderated by MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry as part of “The Melissa Harris-Perry Show”Teacher Town Hall on MSNBC, moderated by NBC News’ Brian WilliamsPanel Discussion on Parent Engagement & Advocacy, moderated by MSNBC’s Alex WagnerMonday, September 24Morning Sessions:

Opening Session with NBC News’ Tom Brokaw and remarks by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg

NBC News’ Andrea Mitchell interviews Condoleezza Rice, former U.S. Secretary of State, on how education impacts national security – and what we can do about it.

Second Annual Citi Innovation Challenge

Case Study #1, moderated by NBC News’ Savannah Guthrie with Julián Castro, Mayor of San Antonio.
Topics include: Poverty, parent/community engagement, and wraparound services

NBC News’ Rehema Ellis hosts a session on the Common Core that begins with a live teacher demonstration showing the Common Core in action, leading to a panel discussion of what it will take to successfully implement the new standards across the country.

Case Study #2, moderated by NBC News’ Kate Snow.
Topics include: Quality teaching, teacher recruitment, and STEM

Brian Williams leads a session on whether character and grit can be taught. This session will include an interactive presentation and panel discussion.

MSNBC’s Tamron Hall leads an interactive session that explores whether game-based learning has the ability to fundamentally change education.

Case Study #3, Tamron Hall interviews U.S. Secretary Arne Duncan.
Topics include: turnaround schools

Case Study #4, moderated by NBC News’ Chelsea Clinton
Topics include: Early literacy

Afternoon sessions:

CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo explores America’s skills gap, and how stronger skills and higher levels of education can power America’s next great economic surge.

Case Study #5, moderated by Tom Brokaw
Tom Brokaw gathers top CEO’s to discuss how business visionaries are addressing our education challenges. Topics include: college and career readiness, and career academies .

Andrea Mitchell sits down with Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers, to discuss her vision for “solutions-driven unionism,” what that could mean for the future of education, and the challenges ahead.

Case Study #6, moderated by Telemundo’s José Díaz-Balart with Florida Governor Jeb Bush
Topics include: Blended learning, technology, and charter schools

Case Study #7, moderated by NBC News’ Natalie Morales
Topics include: Early childhood education, and parent engagement

Case Study #8, moderated by NBC News’ Dr. Nancy Snyderman
Topics include: Wraparound services

Evening Session:

Education Nation convenes a special evening program on the relationship between high school graduation, college and career preparedness, and college access and completion. Tom Brokaw joins General Colin Powell and panelists including Eduardo Padrón, President of Miami Dade College.

Tuesday, September 25

Morning Sessions:

Tom Brokaw hosts a session on public-private partnerships and closing the skills gap, featuring U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis.

Case Study #9, moderated by Rehema Ellis
Topics include: College/career readiness, business engagement, and turnaround schools. Confirmed participants include Dennis Van Roekel, President of the National Education Association.

Case Study #10, moderated by MSNBC’s Alex Witt
Topics include: child development, literacy; dual language, and minority students

Conclusion of the Citi Innovation Challenge, moderated by Brian Williams with MSNBC’s Craig Melvin, featuring: Walter Isaacson, President & CEO, The Aspen Institute; Kaya Henderson, Chancellor, Washington DC Public Schools; Craig Barrett, Retired Chairman, Intel; and Mark Mason, Chief Executive Officer, Citi Holdings.

DECISION 2012 at Education Nation (Part 1): President Obama shares his vision for the nation’s education future in a taped interview with Savannah Guthrie, discussing what it will take to prepare all Americans for the high-skill jobs of the 21st century.

NBC News’ David Gregory leads a “Meet the Press”-style session putting the presidential election in an education context and discussing the education and skills agenda following the election, with leading Governors, Mayors and other state and local perspectives. Confirmed panelists include Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor of Los Angeles, and Governor Beverly Perdue of North Carolina.

DECISION 2012 at Education Nation (Part 2): Governor Romney joins Brian Williams live on stage at the Education Nation Summit to share his vision for the nation’s education future and answer questions from Summit attendees, discussing what it will take to prepare all Americans for the high-skill jobs of the 21st century.

Brian Williams closes the 2012 “Education Nation” Summit by convening the nation’s current and former U.S. Secretaries of Education. NBC News looks back at the 2012 National Summit and announces plans for “Education Nation” Year-Round in 2013.

For more about “Education Nation,” visit, “Like” us on Facebook: or follow us on Twitter @EducationNation.

Sponsors of the 2012 “Education Nation” Summit include Citi, University of Phoenix, ExxonMobil, the American Federation of Teachers, the Bezos Family Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Target, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, National Education Association and State Farm. Knowledge Partners include the General Motors Foundation, Scholastic, NBC Learn and America’s Promise Alliance.