PBS Launches PBS KIDS® Next Generation Media Fall 2006

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PBS SVP Lesli Rotenberg to Lead This Five-Year Children's Educational Media Initiative

Alexandria, VA (November 14, 2005) - PBS announces a five-year initiative entitled PBS KIDS Next Generation Media, defining the role PBS will play in the changing digital children's media landscape. Most immediately prescribed by this initiative are a new preschool multi-platform destination and a 24-hour multicast service for early elementary school kids. Both will launch in fall 2006. Lesli Rotenberg, Senior Vice President, PBS Brand Management, has been tasked to lead this cross-divisional effort.

"Parents depend on PBS as the most trusted provider of entertaining, educational children's media to help children prepare for success in school and in life," said Pat Mitchell, PBS President and CEO.

"Having set the standard for high quality children's educational programming, on-air and online, PBS intends to lead the industry to the next phase for this new generation of children who consume and access media differently than previous generations," added Lesli Rotenberg.

Rotenberg is working closely with PBS staff and will convene a "Think Tank" of advisors including educational, child development, media and technology experts to develop the strategy and integrate related activities across the company for PBS KIDS Next Generation Media. The following will launch in 2006:

  • In January 2006, PBS will reinvent its children's schedule in response to parent research that indicates a desire for age-appropriate shows addressing key developmental stages - toddler, preschool and early elementary school - to be grouped together.

  • In fall 2006, PBS KIDS will launch a new cohesive multi-platform environment, with a live host, designed exclusively for preschoolers.



  • A PBS KIDS GO! 24-hour multicast service will debut in fall 2006, based on the success of the PBS KIDS GO! programming block and following the launch of the new PBS KIDS Sprout 24-hour and On Demand preschool service. PBS KIDS GO! launched in October 2004 and continues to be a success with the early elementary school audience - PBS has seen a 17% increase in national viewership among 6 to 8 year olds*, while remaining steady with preschoolers during the afternoon time period.



  • Throughout the year, three new educational series will debut: IT'S A BIG BIG WORLD, premiering in January for preschoolers, with a geography and science curriculum; CURIOUS GEORGE, premiering in the fall for preschoolers, with math and engineering concepts; and FETCH!, premiering in June for early elementary school kids, focusing on hands-on science and outdoor learning.



  • On the Internet, pbskids.org, pbskidsgo.org and pbsparents.org are expanding their offerings to provide even more age-appropriate activities, features and resources for families, including premium educational online games for preschoolers and early elementary school kids. Each new component of PBS KIDS Next Generation Media will include resources for parents, teachers and educators that complement the themes and educational goals of PBS' children's programming. All PBS materials will be catalogued for easy access and correlation to state and national teaching standards through pbsteachersource.org.

"We know kids develop at different paces; thus, PBS KIDS looks at stages rather than ages," said Rotenberg. "PBS is committed to providing stimulating and developmentally appropriate content for kids every step of the way, and resources for parents online at pbsparents.org to help them further the learning experience."

Rotenberg will continue to oversee the strategic brand positioning and promotion of primetime and children's programming, Internet content, education services and business ventures across a growing number of media platforms at PBS. Rotenberg was named one of the nation's top 15 "Women to Watch" by Advertising Age in 2001, and one of the top 30 Brand Builders by Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and Promax/BDA. In 2004, Television Week and Promax/BDA selected the PBS "Be More" campaign as one of the top 10 Campaigns of Distinction. Rotenberg has received numerous advertising and promotion honors, including the 2003 Emmy for Best Commercial, the 2004 CINE Special Jury Award for Best On-Air Promo, 12 CINE Golden Eagle awards, 24 Promax/BDA Awards, four CTAM Awards and three Telly Awards. Prior to joining PBS in November 2000, Rotenberg was Vice President, Marketing, at Animal Planet, and a marketing executive at Discovery for 10 years.

With a 360-degree approach to learning and reaching children, PBS KIDS leverages the full spectrum of media and technology advancements, as well as community to build knowledge, critical thinking, imagination and curiosity. PBS KIDS encourages children to interact as respectful citizens in a diverse society. By involving parents, teachers and caregivers as learning partners, PBS KIDS helps to empower children for success in school and life.

PBS KIDS is committed to providing the highest-quality non-commercial content and learning environment for children across the country. Providing age-appropriate, diverse programming for kids, PBS KIDS' programs consistently earn more prestigious awards than any other broadcast or cable network. Only PBS KIDS has earned the unanimous endorsement of parents, children, industry leaders and teachers. With additional PBS resources to complement its programming, including PBS KIDS online (www.pbskids.org), PBS KIDS GO! (www.pbskidsgo.org), PBS Parents (www.pbsparents.org), PBS TeacherSource (www.pbsteachersource.org), PBS Ready To Learn services and literacy events across the country, PBS KIDS is providing the tools necessary for positive child development. PBS is a nonprofit media enterprise owned and operated by the nation's 348 public television stations, serving nearly 90 million people each week and reaching 99% of American homes.


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Stephanie Aaronson, PBS KIDS, 703.739.5074 / saaronson@pbs.org
Jill Corderman, PBS KIDS, 703.739.5788 / jcorderman@pbs.org

* Nielsen Galaxy Explorer, M-F (3pm-5pm), 10/11/04-10/7/05 compared to 10/13/03-10/8/04.