A&E network reveals plot of new show at Highland Park High School

Published: Sep. 7, 2017 at 12:15 PM CDT
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A&E network is set to premiere the new show "Undercover High," a docuseries that follows seven adults, aged 21 to 26, who embed themselves for a semester in Highland Park High School, this October.

A&E says the participants pose as regular students. They attend class, make friends with Highland Park High School Students and participate in clubs and activities, all to "provide an inside look at what it's like to be a teenager today." The network says the participants were not aware of each other, and only school administrators and select members of the community knew their true identities and the reason they were there for the semester-long stay.

A&E says Dr. Tiffany Anderson, the Superintendent of Topeka Public Schools, "was instrumental to the implementation of the project." The production company, Learning Tree Productions, donated $650,000 to the school's scholarship fund, USD 501 spokesperson Misty Kruger.

“It is critical that we understand and support the success of public schools, where all students, regardless of privilege or ethnicity, can access an education,” said Dr. Anderson. “A&E Network has served as a teaching and learning partner with Highland Park High School students and staff who voluntarily choose to participate in a project highlighting experiences in school and identifying issues impacting all youth. “Undercover High” empowers us to lead courageous conversations focused on improving outcomes, and support students who face various societal challenges providing a deeper understanding of their reality. As we examine ourselves on a national screen, we look forward to joining others as we listen, learn and engage in the dialogue about national issues facing today’s youth.”

The TV networks says the participants in the series include a former bully, victims of bullying, a teen mom, a youth motivational speaker, a set of siblings and a teen minister. They went through background checks, extensive training and ongoing meetings with psychologists and school counselors.

A&E Network created a scholarship fund administered by the Topeka Public Schools Foundation aimed at providing enhanced learning and achievement opportunities for Highland Park High School students.

The series is set to air October 10th.