New Arkansas PBS series to boost summer learning

by Jeff Della Rosa ([email protected]) 303 views 

Arkansas PBS and the Arkansas Department of Education recently announced partnering to create “Rise and Shine,” an educational program designed to boost summer learning and help kindergarten through fifth-grade students challenged because of the pandemic retain academic learning goals.

The six-week program features lessons led by Arkansas teachers to reinforce learning in subjects, including literacy, math, science and social studies. It airs on Arkansas PBS weekdays from 8 to 11:30 a.m. and started July 6.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with the Arkansas Department of Education and partners across the state to bring an essential summer learning experience to our K-5 students,” said Sajni Kumpuris, education director for Arkansas PBS. “Our organization is committed to enriching and empowering Arkansans through relevant, daily content, and this partnership allows us to bring more value to education and provide a new avenue for teachers to connect with students during the summer months.”

“Rise and Shine” comprises more than 90 hours of programming, largely locally produced, and resources available at no cost to families. The over-the-air broadcast is expected to fill the void for students without internet access outside school.

Arkansas PBS is expanding transmitter coverage using $6.4 million in COVID-19 relief money awarded by the Arkansas CARES Act Steering Committee. The public TV station recently completed the first of a five-transmitter expansion to achieve near-universal broadcast coverage in the state by the end of the year.

Following the Arkansas Academic Standards framework developed by the Division of Elementary and Secondary Education, Arkansas educators and statewide partners will provide the students with customized content that’s centered on the PBS KIDS series. Arkansas Teachers of the Year will lead the sessions that include segments from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, the Little Rock Zoo, the Museum of Discovery, Botanical Gardens of the Ozarks, Museum of Native American History, Central Arkansas Library System, Mid-America Science Museum, Scott Family Amazeum and the Arkansas Travelers.