WCTE is one of six recipients for $1 million in funding from the Tennessee Department of Education.
President Becky Magura said the Department of Education reached out in March to see how PBS could help get educational programming over the air during the pandemic. However, Magura said the plan is to keep this going, by broadcasting teacher created content through the end of the school year.
“It’s to thank us for that partnership and to help us recoup some of the expenses we’ve had in doing that,” Magura said. “Also, just in going forward.”
Magura said the plan is to get back together with the Tennessee Department of Education. She said they will partner together to determine which materials kids need the most.
“We’ll continue that all through the school year,” Magura said. “Work with the Department of Education on what kind of content will be needed, next summer.”
Magura said a big part of putting this teacher created content on WCTE is for kids without internet access. She said the department and teachers got the materials created, but needed to deliver it to more kids.
“We have teachers that are willing to produce content, specific to the state standards, specific to lessons that they knew that children and students would need,” Magura said. “We also recognize that there are students who do not have access to the internet.”
Magura said a lot of credit goes to station managers who opened up the airways when virtual education came to the forefront. The $1 million will be divided equally among Tennessee’s six PBS affiliates.