NEW ORLEANS — NBC News’ Education Nation will land in New Orleans on Friday in its second stop on a tri-city tour.

The broadcasting initiative will include an opening ceremony followed by panel discussions Friday, a teacher town hall meeting Saturday evening, a student town hall meeting Sunday evening and television and online broadcasts into next week.

The tour started in Detroit and will end in Phoenix. Last year, the tour went through Denver, Atlanta and Miami.

The events are not open to the public but will stream live online and will air on WDSU-TV.

At the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts on Friday, NBC correspondent Hoda Kotb and WDSU News anchorwoman Sula Kim will host discussions on early childhood education, lessons from turning around failing schools, and college and career readiness.

Gov. Bobby Jindal, state Superintendent of Education John White, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., Mayor Mitch Landrieu, Orleans Parish School Board interim Superintendent Stan Smith and Recovery School District Superintendent Patrick Dobard are scheduled to make appearances.

The key sponsor of the event is the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. William Buster, director of the foundation’s Mississippi and New Orleans programming, said the tour is a valuable opportunity for a dialogue about the challenges and successes happening in education in New Orleans, which has seen sweeping reform over the past eight years with more than 80 percent of the city’s public school students now enrolled in charter schools.

With the town hall events, he said, the teachers and students have a voice along with the policy makers.

Buster said that the foundation also works to provide healthier food options in the city’s schools.

Experiences gathered on the tour will be part of an Education Nation annual summit in New York City.

More information about where to watch the events can be found at