The Tennessee Department of Education secured a partnership with the state's PBS stations to deliver daily instructional content for Tennessee students during COVID-19 school closures. This partnership will provide all students with access to daily learning opportunities right in their own homes.
Staring April 6, Tennessee's six PBS stations — WNPT Nashville, East Tennessee PBS, WCTE Upper Cumberland, WKNO Memphis, West TN PBS, and Chattanooga WTCI — will deliver two hours of programming with high-quality instructional content from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. CST. Four hours of content will also be streamed overnight, which viewers can watch live or record.
The content will be developed and provided by Tennessee educators in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Education and meets a critical need to ensure all students have access to high-quality learning opportunities, regardless if their home has internet connectivity or capable devices.
"This is an incredible example of Tennesseans coming together to support kids," said Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn. "We are so thrilled to be partnering with PBS stations across the state to make high-quality instructional content available to all students, so they can continue learning during school closures. Families and students are hungry for content right now, and we are grateful our local stations have stepped up to help fill this need."
This statewide partnership builds on the work many of Tennessee's public TV stations have already been doing with local districts to provide instructional programming during school closures.
"Tennessee's Public Television Stations are committed to serving the citizens of Tennessee and look forward to working with the Tennessee Department of Education during this challenging time to provide instructional educational programs to the students of our state," said Vickie Lawson, Chairman of Tennessee Public Television Council and President of East Tennessee PBS. "This partnership is another example of Tennessee's Public Television Stations willingness to serve when needed."
"This new partnership with the Tennessee Department of Education will work to meet our shared mission of ensuring every child is inspired and educated, regardless of their circumstances." said Becky Magura, President & CEO, WCTE Cookeville. "This programming will help ensure students without access to the internet or other instructional materials will still have access to high quality instruction during these school closures. For decades, we have been committed to inspiring and educating students for decades, and now more than ever, those services are critical."
If you need internet access to help the kids stay at grade level, Charter and Comcast are offering free service for those in need.
Charter will offer free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students that do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription at any service level up to 100 megabits per second.
To enroll in Charter's free-broadband program, eligible consumers must call 844-488-8395. The company said it will waive installation fees for new student households. Charter said it will partner with school districts "to ensure local communities are aware of these tools to help students learn remotely."
In addition, the operator will open its Wi-Fi hotspots across its footprint for public use, free of charge. This offer began March 16.
As the country deals with the effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), Comcast is taking immediate steps to help connect more low-income families to the Internet at home. New Internet Essentials customers will receive two free months of Internet service.
The company is also increasing the speed of the program to 25 Mbps downloads, and 3 Mbps uploads for all new and existing customers.
Visit https://www.internetessentials.com/covid19 for more details. This offer began March 16.