CPB and PBS Increase Commitment to Providing Educational Television and Digital Media Resources for Children, Parents and Educators

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Local Public Media Stations Ensure Access for High-Need Communities

WASHINGTON, DC (December 10, 2014) – Today, at the White House Summit on Early Learning, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) and PBS highlighted public media’s commitment to support early learning through high-quality educational media and digital learning tools for preschool children, educators and parents. These ongoing efforts represent an investment of $58 million.

“We recognize the vital role that quality early education experiences play in improving school readiness for our nation’s children,” said Patricia Harrison, president and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. “Our commitment sets children on a path to graduation and success in life.”

“Through our collective work, CPB, PBS and local stations are  leveraging the significant and longstanding private-public investment in public media to reach all American families with innovative curriculum-based content that is proven to impact early learning,” said Paula Kerger, president and CEO of PBS.

Part of the investment includes funding to extend current projects as part of the Ready To Learn Initiative, which helps make possible the development of educational television and digital media content for young children and their families, especially those from low-income communities.

Key projects include:

  • More High-Quality PBS KIDS Content: The funding has helped support the development of two PBS KIDS series, the award winning Peg + Cat and the recently launched Odd Squad.   These series focus on helping children build their early math skills.
  • New Innovative Apps for Parents:  In 2015, PBS KIDS is making significant content additions to both the PBS KIDSSuper Vision and PBS Parents Play and Learn apps, which have already reached more than 1.4 million downloads, providing resources that help parents get their children ready to enter school.
  • New Resources for Teacher Professional Development: To support teachers in their use of interactive content and games in the classroom, CPB and PBS have partnered with Boston University’s School of Education to produce a series of teaching tips and video vignettes. The resources will be available on pbskids.org/lab and pbslearningmedia.org, which has 1.5 million users with registered access.
  • Local Impact: 22 public media stations are working with partners in their communities to provide curriculum-based PBS KIDS content to low-income families with young children.

The commitment also includes $20 million from the American Graduate/PBS KIDS fund, established earlier this year to expand the scope and reach of the U.S. Department of Education’s Ready To Learn Initiative. Through the fund, CPB and PBS are working to develop resources and tools to meet the growing needs of parents who want to become more involved in their children’s educational success and to help PBS stations offer free, high-quality content to enrich early learning experiences in homes, childcare centers and classrooms.

Through both the Ready To Learn Initiative and the American Graduate/PBS KIDS fund, CPB and PBS are expanding the network of public media stations in diverse communities across the country that provide direct educational media services to children, parents and educators. As part of this effort, 22 stations are already working in collaboration with an extensive range of partners – preschools, Head Start, Title I Schools, public libraries, museums and other community organizations – to offer high quality PBS KIDS interactive content and resources to support the early learning needs of children from low-income families, as well as enhancing family engagement and professional development needs of their parents and educators.

The stations are located in 21 states, including: California, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Washington.

About CPB
The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government's investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,400 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide, and is the largest single source of funding for research, technology, and program development for public radio, television and related online services. For more information visit our website at www.cpb.org.

About PBS
PBS, with its over 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 100 million people through television and over 28 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. PBS’ premier children’s TV programming and its website, pbskids.org, are parents’ and teachers’ most trusted partners in inspiring and nurturing curiosity and love of learning in children. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org, one of the leading dot-org websites on the Internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at pbs.org/pressroom or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.

PBS KIDS, the number one educational media brand for kids, offers all children the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television, online, mobile, and community-based programs. Kidscreen- and Webby-award winning pbskids.org provides engaging interactive content, including the PBS KIDS video player, now offering free streaming video accessible on computer- and mobile-device-based browsers. For more information on specific PBS KIDS content supporting literacy, science, math, and more, visit pbs.org/pressroom or follow PBS KIDS on Twitter and Facebook.

CPB: Kelly Broadway; 202-879-9641; kbroadway@cpb.org
PBS: Maria Vera; 703-739-3225; mvera@pbs.org