WMHT Receives New Ready To Learn Initiative Award to Support Early Childhood Learning in Albany
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Visit the Albany Kids Ready to Learn webpage to learn more!

WMHT will expand school readiness projects in the Albany community with support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) and PBS to launch the Albany KIDS Ready To Learn initiative. WMHT is one of 21 public television stations across the country to receive funding as part of the CPB-PBS Ready To Learn (RTL) Initiative. WMHT will collaborate with community partners to effectively integrate PBS KIDS transmedia resources in the South End neighborhood of  Albany  with the primary goal to build the math and literacy skills of children in Pre-K thru 2nd grades.

With millions of children lacking the basic early math and literacy skills to succeed in school, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) and PBS have joined forces through the Ready To Learn Initiative, a project funded by the U.S. Department of Education and Congress, to address this critical school readiness issue, particularly in low-income communities. The RTL Initiative uses multiplatform media and other learning tools – including television programs, interactive games, mobile apps, as well as hands-on activities – to engage and strengthen early learning experiences for children ages 2-8 at home, in preschool, and in other out of school settings. 

WMHT will collaborate with Albany-based educational partners who serve children in school, after school, and throughout the summer. The project partners include the City School District of Albany, Giffen Memorial Elementary School, Albany Community Action Partnership, Capital District YMCA Albany Branch, Boys and Girls Club of Albany and the Albany Promise.

WMHT will provide training to local educators and program staff on how to use RTL multiplatform content, and to parents on how to engage their children in math and literacy activities on their digital media devices at home along with ways to connect those activities to reading and hands-on learning.

"WMHT's Albany KIDS Ready to Learn initiative is an excellent example of the robust community partnerships that we believe will help catapult learning for all of our students, and, in this case, especially for our children in the South End," said City School District of Albany Superintendent Marguerite Vanden Wyngaard, Ph.D. "We are grateful for this support, and for all of the partners who have come together to join with us in helping our 2020 Vision become a reality."

“Research shows that early learning can help all children succeed in school and in life, and the need is greatest for kids from low-income families” said Robert Altman, President and CEO of WMHT “With this additional funding from the Ready to Learn initiative, WMHT can extend its commitment to our community’s youngest learners and provide resources to help families support early math and literacy learning, a foundation that supports education from Pre-K to college and career readiness.”

Other stations receiving funding include WVIZ/Ideastream (Cleveland), Nebraska Educational Television (Auburn, Fremont, and two sites TBD), WFSU (Tallahassee, Jefferson County), Detroit Public Television (River Rouge, Taylor, Lincoln Park), Iowa Public Television (Burlington, Sioux City, Denison), KBTC (Tacoma), KET (Louisville, Jefferson County), KLRU (Austin), Mississippi Public Broadcasting (Jackson), Maryland Public Television (Baltimore), PBS SoCal (Orange County, Los Angeles), Prairie Public Broadcasting (Northeast Education Services Cooperative region/ Devils Lake), Twin Cities Public Television (Minneapolis, St. Paul), Vegas PBS (Clark County), WCTE (Cookeville), WGBH (Boston, Lawrence), WHRO (Norfolk, Chesapeake),WNED (Buffalo), WQED (Pittsburgh), Illinois Education Collaborative – WSIU, WILL, WTVP (Champaign-Urbana, Carbondale, Peoria). 

About The Ready To Learn Initiative
The Ready To Learn Initiative is a cooperative agreement funded and managed by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Innovation and Improvement. It supports the development of innovative educational television and digital media targeted at preschool and early elementary school children and their families. Its general goal is to promote early learning and school readiness, with a particular interest in reaching low-income children. In addition to creating television and other media products, the program supports activities intended to promote national distribution of the programming, effective educational uses of the programming, community-based outreach, and research on educational effectiveness.

Scott Sauer
Executive Vice President, External Affairs
Assistant General Manager

The contents of this release were developed under a grant from the Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.

The project is funded by a Ready To Learn grant (PR/AWARD No. U295A100025, CFDA No. 84.295A) provided by the Department of Education to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.