The Department of Education and Ketchum Inc. agreed last year to subcontract part of a program to promote the No Child Left Behind Act to Armstrong Williams and his public relations and production company, the Graham Williams Group. Excepts from the contract:
• Ketchum shall arrange for Mr. Williams to regularly comment on NCLB during the course of his broadcasts [of the syndicated show “The Right Side With Armstrong Williams”].
• Ketchum shall create and place the following ads:
• Two (2) (60-second) television ads promoting NCLB. Ads shall be produced by the Graham Williams Group. Ads shall feature a one-minute read by Secretary Paige.
• Two (2) (60-second) radio ads promoting NCLB. ... Each advertising spot shall run during the one-hour cable television broadcast [of “The Right Side”].
• Secretary Paige and other department officials shall have the option of appearing from time to time as studio guests to discuss NCLB and other important education reform issues.
• Mr. Williams shall utilize his long-term working relationship with America’s Black Forum, where he appears as a guest commentator, to encourage the producers to periodically address the No Child Left Behind Act.
SOURCE: USA Today.com
A version of this article appeared in the January 19, 2005 edition of Education Week as Delivering the Message