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MontanaPBS continues to provide free resources to support students learning at home, educators


April 20, 2020

BOZEMAN - As schools across Montana remain closed to slow the spread of COVID-19, MontanaPBS and the Montana Office of Public Instruction will continue to support home learning for students by delivering a new weekday television schedule of educational programs aligned to state school standards along with free digital learning resources accessible from home.

The new 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekday schedule includes specific blocks of time for pre-kindergarten through eighth grade levels and covers a range of subjects including English, history, language arts, social studies, science and math. MontanaPBS' regular primetime schedule is not affected by the change. The new program schedule can be found online at https://www.montanapbs.org/schedule .

The new programming began March 30 and will continue as long as the statewide stay-at-home order and school closures remain in place, according to Paul Heitt-Rennie, director of content and chief operator at MontanaPBS. MontanaPBS provides corresponding free digital content for at-home learning and support for teachers navigating this new learning landscape.

"I appreciate the MontanaPBS Learn at Home options for my students because I know my students are getting access to high quality learning materials when they watch one of the PBS programs," said Amanda Rapstad, a fourth-grade teacher in Belgrade. Rapstad noted that Learn at Home materials are color coded by grade level and subject, "which makes it even easier to assign appropriate materials for your class."

People who have used the Learn at Home resources are invited to provide MontanaPBS with feedback via an online survey. The survey is available at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/7GYWGLF .

The Learn at Home curriculum-based programming schedule has preempted many of the regularly scheduled daytime programs, which has led to discrepancies with some online and on-screen guide listings as well as the MontanaPBS April viewer's guide.

"MontanaPBS recognizes that major changes to our broadcast program schedule can be disruptive for some viewers, but during this unprecedented crisis we are committed to fully supporting our students, families and educators across Montana," said Aaron Pruitt, director and general manager at KUSM-TV/MontanaPBS.

For more about MontanaPBS Learn at Home resources, visit: www.montanapbs.org/learnathome .

Educators looking for support implementing distance learning using the Learn at Home programming schedule can contact the MontanaPBS education staff. Director of Education Nikki Vradenburg is available at [email protected]; Deanna Mydland, early learning specialist, is available at [email protected]

MontanaPBS works to connect residents of the state through the use of broadcast television, the internet and community outreach projects. It is available to families for free via over-the-air broadcast in the state's larger cities, on translators in smaller communities, as well as on cable TV, Dish, Direct TV and the recently launched live streaming service, YouTube TV. To watch MontanaPBS in your community, visit its broadcast area page at https://www.montanapbs.org/about/broadcast-area/ .


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