Topeka Public Schools to host screening of Undercover High premiere, panel to follow

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – Broadcast journalist and executive producer, Soledad O’Brien, is coming to the capital city. O’Brien is the current anchor for Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien, a political show owned by Hearst Television.

On Monday, January 8, O’Brien will moderate a panel discussion about equity and race in Topeka Public Schools, following a screening of the first episode of Undercover High, which will premiere on the A&E network at 9 p.m. Tuesday.

The docu-series was filmed last year at Highland Park High School, which follows seven young adults, ranging in age from 21 to 26, who embed themselves for a semester at the school.

The participants pose as typical students – attending classes, making friends and participating in school clubs and activities – to provide an inside look at what it’s like to be a teenager today.

The docu-series was initially set to premiere on the A&E Network in October, but was postponed for January 9.

Panel members include:

  • Dr. Beryl New, former principal of Highland Park High School, current Director of Equity for Topeka Public Schools
  • Mr. Danny Ackerman, assistant principal of Highland Park High School
  • Dr. Tiffany Anderson, superintendent of Topeka Public Schools
  • Mr. D’Andre Phillips, graduate of Highland Park High School
  • Ms. Amy Cline, teacher at Highland Park High School
  • Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble,adolescent and child psychologist, and associate professor, Department of Psychiatry at Georgetown University Medical Center
  • Dr. Deborah Holmes, equity consultant

The event will be held at Highland Park High School beginning at 3:30 p.m., Monday. At 3:45 p.m., Episode 1 will be played, followed by the panel discussion. The event is open to the public, but limited seating is available.  

To RSVP, contact Misty Kruger, Director of Communications at Topeka Public Schools at



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