When Ed Begley Jr. hosted and narrated the first one-hour special, GROWING GREENER SCHOOLS, across PBS stations through the Earth Day Network on April 20, 2010, the program was so popular it was repeated 1,346 times in the first six months of its license window to more than 300 stations. PBS and Siemens were the principal funders of the historic project that profiled the gestation and growth of a fledgling concept, catalyzing educators, policymakers, and students nationally. It is time to look forward.
No quantitative assessment was taken in 2010. Safe to say, however, that the current urgency topreserve our environment and forcefully address the existential threat of climate change globally demands compelling new projects. MPC, known for its two-decade Ashoka-honored commitment to social justice issues through media, is launching GGS 2.0.
Now we must tell intensive stories of present-day activities, profile new people, and look into the future. No one questions today that the children shall lead. They are, in this country and globally. They, and their representatives in the adult policy world, demand change and action in a movement unprecedented in our human history. Income and wealth gaps are dangerously unequal. Change begins at home, in neighborhoods, in schools, in government, and through leveraged media. Climate aberations are everywhere, inescapable. Education/media is the vital weapon.
GGS 2.0 will be designed with:
– 2 months of R&D, including recruiting a new Board of Advisors of some twenty people, new funding of $100,000 from one or more sources, for in-the-field assessment, evaluation, and crafting of content/style design, beginning ASAP;
– 2 one-hour programs in mind, hosted by a few new people;
– multiple profiles of 8-10 diverse leaders, young and seasoned, in different neighborhoods, geographies, economies, environments, educational facilities public and private, across multiple spectrums of growth, progress, and outcomes;
– a companion book to be published as concurrent with the broadcasts as possible, derived in part from the transcripts gathered in the field;
– a “how-to” workbook for community organizers, online;
– a vibrant, interactive website and social media dynamic;
– a series of 12 shorter videos, online and off, for classroom/meeting use;
– a group of children’s and environmental organizations as outreach partners;
– neighborhood events, engagement activities, and televised town hall meetings in select communities;
– broadcast dates of Fall 2020, just after school begins;
– as much pre-publicity as we can generate through the election cycle.