In hopes of spurring community action and support for education, WDIV-TV in Detroit, Mich., put the spotlight on Cornerstone Schools, a local urban independent school system with a 95 percent high school graduation rate. The four-phase campaign began with an invitation for viewers to join the stationís anchors for a "Back to School" event with students from Cornerstone Schools. To build awareness, a heavy schedule of public service announcements (PSAs) aired starting a month out. WDIV dedicated extensive air time to the children as they taught community attendees how to play the violin, learn Chinese and attempt difficult math problems. More than 400 people attended. For phase two, WDIV produced a spot highlighting the success of the "Back to School" event. The daily PSAs drove home the message that the community can change the future for its youngest members. The third phase will coincide with the stationís Olympics coverage and will compare the childrenís "can-do" determination with those of Olympic athletes. During the final phase, WDIV will produce a PSA specifically designed to urge people to donate to Cornerstone Schools at a level that will grant them an invitation to the September 8th Detroit Tigers baseball game and tailgate party. WDIV will be supporting this message with accompanying news reports and will complete the initiative by thanking the community on the air for supporting Detroitís children.
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