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Teen Kids News facts for kids

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Teen Kids News
Teen Kids News logo emblem.png
Genre Children's television series
News program
Created by Al Primo
Alan J. Weiss
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 14
No. of episodes 687
Production
Executive producer(s) Al Primo
Alan J. Weiss
Producer(s) Tania Wilk
Marilou Yacoub
Running time Approx. 24 minutes (without commercials)
Production company(s) Alan Weiss Productions
Release
Original network First-run syndication
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
Original release September 27, 2003 (2003-09-27) – present

Teen Kids News (initially titled EKN Worldwide Kids News and alternately abbreviated on-air as TKN since 2012) is an educational newsmagazine series aimed at adolescents between the ages of 13–16 years old and their parents that debuted in first-run syndication the weekend of September 27, 2003. Teen Kids News discusses important issues in a format intended to educate and inform both children and adults. In-studio segments are shot at studios in Manhattan with field reports done on location around the country and world. The series meets Federal Communications Commission guidelines for educational and informational programming. U.S. television stations are required by law to broadcast three hours of children's programming each week; the majority of affiliates that run the series typically air it on Saturday or Sunday mornings depending on the station, though a few air the series on Fridays in the morning or daytime time periods.

The series airs on over 200 TV stations covering approximately 91% of the country and is seen in 1,000 locations in 175 countries worldwide through the American Forces Network and is seen in 12,600 schools through a special classroom education feed.

Beginning with the tenth-season premiere on the weekend of September 15, 2012, Teen Kids News began broadcasting in high-definition. In-studio segments are broadcast in the format, though most field reports continue to be produced and aired in 4:3 standard definition, with pillarboxing added to fill the left and right sides of widescreen television sets.

Background

The series was created by Al Primo, former news director for KYW-TV in Philadelphia and WABC-TV in New York City and creator of the popular Eyewitness News concept. Primo launched the series as a project to give young people the opportunity to develop an interest in the journalism industry by delivering news and information to their peers. Teen Kids News was originally known as EKN Worldwide Kids News for the first half of the series' first season, before adopting its current name. The series was the first attempt at a syndicated news show aimed at children since the cancellation of the similar News for Kids in 1996.

On-air personalities

The show's primary anchor, Mwanzaa, who had been with the series since its September 2003 debut, departed in September, 2013. All anchors and reporters for the program range in age between 10 and 20 years of age; unlike traditional newscasts and newsmagazine programs, the series never discloses the last names of its anchors and reporters, identifying them on a first name basis only. A number of the anchor/reporters were children of television anchor/reporters. The current co-anchors are Livia and Siena.

The series has featured over the years anchor/reporters who are children of well-known television personalities and journalists including Haley Cohen, the show's original anchor from 2003 to 2007 and daughter of former CBS and Fox News journalist Paula Zahn; Jenna Ruggiero, reporter from 2003 to 2009 and daughter of popular New York City anchor/reporter Rosanna Scotto of Fox owned-and-operated station WNYW; Cody Gifford, sports anchor during the first two seasons and son of Kathie Lee and Frank Gifford; Sloane Glass, daughter of Nancy Glass and Charles Lachman served as a reporter. And Meredith Viera's son, Gabe Cohen, sports anchor during the remaining two seasons and currently the general assignment reporter for KOMO-TV in Seattle.

Sponsorship

The series is very restrictive in its selection of underwriters for specific segments and those seen in its commercial breaks, and follows strict guidelines and maintains the distinction between editorial and sponsorship. Sponsors generally come from the fields of apparel, entertainment, health and beauty, electronics, retail and the U.S. government.

Toy companies and food companies are excluded from buying commercial space for the series and are not allowed to be sponsors on the series, certain other syndicated children's series also follow this policy as well and therefore ads airing on the show generally appeal to adult viewers instead of the program's target demographic.

International versions

Impressed by the positive message of the series, a programming executive at Rustavi 2 in the Republic of Georgia approached Al Primo to create a version of Teen Kids News for the country. The Georgian version of the series titled Sabavshvo Ambebi, debuted on March 22, 2009.

Negotiations are underway with several countries to license Teen Kids News as an educational concept, a nation building project, a program to preserve the cultural heritage of the country and ESL tool.

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