ABC, Winfrey are 'Dream' builders


Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Prods. and ABC have teamed for a primetime special to chronicle the talk show host's five-year journey of building a school for disadvantaged girls in South Africa.

The one-hour special, "Building a Dream: The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy," also will feature the stories of some of the girls who study at the Academy. Winfrey will host the program, which will air at 10 p.m. on Feb. 26, the final Monday of the February sweep. She also will executive produce with Katy Davis.

The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy — a 28-building campus boasting computer and science laboratories, a library, a theater and a wellness center — opened in January with a ceremony attended by former South African president Nelson Mandela and such celebrities as Tina Turner, Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey, Sidney Poitier, Chris Tucker and Spike Lee.

The $40 million school in the small town of Henley-on-Klip, south of Johannesburg, accommodates 152 girls from poor families selected for their strong academic and leadership potential. The number of students is slated to expand to 450.