NATAS Splits Off Children’s, Family Programming Into New Awards Show

NATAS will now honor children's shows like HBO's 'Sesame Street' in their own ceremony.
NATAS will now honor children's shows like HBO's 'Sesame Street' in their own ceremony. (Image credit: HBO/'Sesame Street')

NATAS -- the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences -- is splitting off children’s and family categories into their own competition apart from the Daytime Emmys: the Children’s & Family Emmy Awards. This marks the first time the New York-based television awards organization has expanded into a new franchise since 1979 when the sports and news & documentary Emmys were announced. 

Children’s and family-oriented content represent the fastest-growing genres that NATAS covers, with a 23% increase over the past two years, the organization said. In recent years, NATAS  has added seven new categories in the preschool sector alone.

 The Individual Achievement in Animation category received the largest number of entries across all NATAS contests, with nearly 300 submissions last year. This change also comes a year after the Television Academy, which handles the Primetime Emmys, and NATAS agreed to consolidate all children’s categories together under the purview of NATAS.  

Winners will continue to be voted upon by both NATAS and Television Academy members in all Children’s and Family categories. NATAS membership consists of more than 18,000 broadcast and media professionals represented in 19 regional chapters across the United States. 

“NATAS has always been a leader in recognizing and celebrating excellence in our industry, and nothing is excelling and expanding more dramatically than the children’s and family community. Recent years have seen explosive growth in the quantity and quality of children’s and family programming, and now is the perfect time to acknowledge and honor this impactful content with a dedicated competition and celebration,” Adam Sharp, president and CEO, NATAS, said in a statement.

Categories, eligibility rules and the call for entries for the Children's & Family Emmys will be announced separately in 2022.◾

Contributing editor Paige Albiniak has been covering the business of television for nearly 25 years. She is a longtime contributor to Next TV, Broadcasting + Cable and Multichannel News. She concurrently serves as editorial director for entertainment marketing association Promax. She has written for such publications as TVNewsCheck, The New York Post, Variety, CBS Watch and more. Albiniak was B+C’s Los Angeles bureau chief from September 2002 to 2004, and an associate editor covering Congress and lobbying for the magazine in Washington, D.C., from January 1997-September 2002.