LAUSD Is Getting Some Help from PBS to Keep Kids Learning During the Shutdown

Half of LAUSD students do not have their own computer at home

For many Los Angeles Unified School District students, remote learning isn’t as easy as opening their laptop and logging in. Of the 700,000 students in the district, around half don’t have their own computer or tablet at home, and a quarter of families don’t have internet access at home at all. To help fill the gap, PBS SoCal and KCET are collaborating with the district to keep kids engaged with learning during what could be a long school shutdown.

“We want to continue to provide the best possible education for our students, even in the event of a significant number of school closures for an extended period of time,” said LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner. “So we asked PBS to work with us with a simple goal: We know what good looks like, let’s find a way to share it with our students.”

During the closure, PBS SoCal, KCET, KLCS-TV, and their digital channels will provide enriching programs during the daytime. The broadcasts are “standards-based instructional content,” according to a statement, which will be paired with lesson plans in math, history, and other subject areas. LAUSD teachers will have access to PBS LearningMedia, a national program that helps develop assignments and learning materials that pair with PBS shows.

Offerings will be tailored to different age groups, with PBS SoCal running programming aimed at pre-K to second grade; KLCS-TV aimed at pre-K to 12th; and KCET broadcasting for high schoolers. Evening programming on KCET and PBS SoCal will be the same mix of essentially adult-oriented entertainment programming that viewers normally see. KLCS-TV will incorporate some additional educational programs into the prime time mix.

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