Local high schools to compete on WETA’s “It’s Academic”


Members of South County High School's team (seated) with coaches Eric Greiling (l.), Chris Bird (r.) and It's Academic host Hillary Howard standing behind them (Credit: South County High School)

The 63rd season of popular quiz show “It’s Academic” kicked off in mid-October, and a couple of local high schools will be competing in coming months.

According to WETA — the public broadcasting station that took over hosting the program from WRC-TV last year — South County High School is one of a dozen schools in the Washington, D.C. metro area slated to appear on the air in November. South County’s team will compete against Fairfax High School and James Hubert Blake High School from Silver Spring, Maryland in a pre-recorded episode airing Nov. 4 at 10 a.m. and repeating on WETA PBS and WETA Metro several times that day and on Nov. 6. The episodes can also be viewed on YouTube, the PBS App and at weta.org.

What makes this season different is that the show has returned to being filmed in-person after a couple of years in virtual format due to the pandemic. Eric Greiling, South County’s quiz bowl coach, said team members are glad about that.

“In 2021-2022 and 2022-2023, we competed over Zoom, so my team was really looking forward to taping in a television studio this year where they could be in the same room as their teammates, the host Hillary Howard and the two opposing schools,” said Greiling. “My fellow coach Chris Bird and I are both very proud of how our team represented SCHS and how they performed during the match.”

Before the pandemic, South County had appeared on "It’s Academic" for at least 10 consecutive school years, added Greiling.

The winning team from each episode will advance to the playoffs and on to the semifinals and championship round. Schools participating in the final match receive scholarship funds and trophies.

Other area schools competing this season include Edison High School (air date: March 23) and Mount Vernon High School (air date: March 30).

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