NBC News and MSNBC on Sunday will start a weeklong series of special reports on education in America amid the coronavirus crisis, as schools grapple with reopening or starting fall classes with online learning.
Coronavirus and the Classroom will include an Aug. 13 primetime NBC special anchored by Lester Holt, with correspondents and newsmakers with guidance for kids, parents and teachers. The special will air at 8 PM ET, and also will be streamed on NBC News Now.
Rashida Jones, Senior Vice President of NBC News and MSNBC, said, “Many are already returning to the classroom or adjusting to virtual back-to-school across the U.S., while the rest of the country continues to debate the reopening of schools.”
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She said that the goal “is to provide programming that facilitates the necessary conversations, explores new solutions, identifies and answers new questions so our viewers can get the information and clarity they need as we head into an uncertain school year.”
This Sunday on Meet the Press, Chuck Todd will feature a panel of educators discussing school reopening, along with videos submitted by students, teachers and parents. Throughout the week, Today will feature reports from Stephanie Gosk, Jenna Bush Hager and Craig Melvin, while 3rd Hour of Today will feature an architect who has a plan for socially distanced schools, and a segment on how students are helping their classes better teach African American history and culture. Today with Hoda and Jenna will feature tips on how parents and their children can better handle stress.
On Wednesday, the recently launched streaming channel Today All Day on Peacock and Today.com will feature a town hall hosted by Craig Melvin, Sheinelle Jones and Hager about the state of education in America, including concerns about inequality, as well as the health implications of sending kids to school or keeping them at home.
NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt will feature reports on education. That includes a joint report from Morgan Radford and Telemundo’s Nicole Suarez on how remote learning is affecting ESL students, part of the series, NBC News x Noticias Telemundo Reports.
On MSNBC on Monday, Melvin will anchor Pandemic: Back to School, starting at 11 AM ET, and the network will feature reports throughout the week from Geoff Bennett, Dasha Burns, Vaughn Hillyard and Jake Ward. Other content will be featured on NBC News NOW, NBC News.com and NBC Stay Tuned. The MSNBC podcast Into America, meanwhile, will do a deep dive into online learning in the San Diego Unified School District, as Trymaine Lee talks to parents, teachers and experts.
Melvin, anchor on Today and MSNBC and co-host of 3rd Hour of Today, said, “As a parent and a journalist, I feel a sense of responsibility to bring our viewers not only critical real-time information but also answer the burning questions so many families, teachers, administrators and students are asking right now. Since dedicating an hour a week on MSNBC to the topic, we continue to receive thousands of viewers questions and have tapped our experts to answer some, but it’s important we try to answer more.”
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