WORTH NOTING N TV

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* WEDNESDAY

National Geography Bee (PBS, 8-9 p.m.): The total purse -- $50,000 -- sounds more like big-time tennis than a geography bee. But that's what 10 students from around the country will be competing for. They became finalists only after winning their state and school bees and getting top scores on a written test.

Not just geographical but cultural questions -- drawn up by the National Geographic Society -- will be sprung on the kids by moderator Alex Trebek, host of TV's ''Jeopardy!''

Recommended: Default

* FRIDAY

Profits and Promises (PBS, 9-11 p.m.): What is a successful corporation? The answer may not be as obvious or simple as it seems. In this two-part program, in fact, it takes a panel of leaders in the areas of business, labor, journalism, and human rights to decide. They range over the global economy in their discussion and debate.

Harvard Law School Prof. Charles Ogletree moderates the first panel, whose topic is ''New Markets, New Challenges.'' In the second part, Prof. Charles Nesson, also from Harvard Law, guides a panel addressing ''Reinventing the Corporation.''

* SATURDAY

From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (ABC, 8-10 p.m.): This edition of the ''ABC Family Movie'' has something unusually interesting to offer -- Lauren Bacall in a rather untypical vehicle: a light-hearted children's drama. Unforgettable in films and a Tony-award winner on stage, Bacall plays the title role of a wealthy art patron who helps two kids solve a mystery.

The script by Betty Goldberg is based on E.L. Konigsburg's Newbery Award-winning children's book about a 12-year-old girl and her 10-year-old brother who run away from home. After settling down in a museum, they want to know who really carved the stone statue there. Could it have been Michelangelo?

We won't tell, of course, except to say that Bacall offers the kids a bargain that could give them the answer.

Please check local listings for these programs.

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