PBS and CPB today announced a new literacy initiative, PBS Kids Raising Readers, to begin in January 2008. Supported by Ready to Learn funds from the U.S. Department of Education grant, the project will target 2-8-year-olds and feature on-air tips for caregivers, educational materials such as DVDs and books, and new Web content for kids and teachers, including a 32-week preschool curriculum and an online course for childcare providers.
Promising “everyone from Aaron Copland to Aaron Neville,” NPR and 12 producing stations released a beta version of the new NPR Music website today at npr.org/music. Organized by genre, the site offers live and recorded performances, artist interviews, blogs and profiles, podcasts and more, tapping into the deejays, music archives and expertise of stations identified with music, including WBGO (jazz), WKSU (folk) and WXPN (Triple A). Other stations will be added as partners, NPR said. Websites of participating stations such as New York’s WFUV feature links to items on the new site. One holdout was L.A.’s KCRW, Current reported in July.
Fans of two now-defunct college stations are pursuing legal actions against the sale of the stations to Minnesota-based American Public Media Group.Two supporters of Florida’s Christian Family Coalition filed suit Oct. 18  in a state court in Miami to overturn Trinity International University’s September sale of former Christian music station WMCU to APMG, which aims to start a classical music station in Miami. In the Twin Cities area, where a classical station was on the losing side, a group of former listeners to St. Olaf College’s bygone WCAL has questioned its sale to APMG’s Minnesota Public Radio, which converted it to The Current, a contemporary music station. On.
It won’t cause as many lumps in throats as the highly concentrated preview reel that PBS displays at its Showcase conference each spring, but it offers many jolts of promise for upcoming seasons of public television.Responding to Current’s annual Pipeline survey, producers and their distributors supplied most information for this list of about 140 completed, scripted, proposed and dreamt-of productions. Thanks to all who responded to the survey. Please direct inquiries about specific programs to the contact people listed with each title.Included:only noninstructional projects one hour or longer that will debut nationally in January 2008 or later. Winter/Spring ’08 | Summer ’08 | Sometime in ’08 | Winter/Spring ’09 | Fall ’09
Sometime in ’10 | Sometime in ’11 | Airdate to be determined
Producing organizations: WNED-TV (Buffalo, N.Y.) and Working Dog Productions. Episodes: 1 x 120 (HD).