Ready-to-Learn Television Goal: To develop, produce, and distribute video programming and educational materials for preschool and elementary school children




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Ready-to-Learn Television
Goal: To develop, produce, and distribute video programming and educational materials for preschool and elementary school children and their parents in order to facilitate the achievement of the National Education Goal for all children in America to start school ready to learn.
Relationship of Program to Volume 1. Department-wide Objectives: Ready to Learn (RTL) Television’s activities support Objectives 2.1 (children enter school ready to learn) and 2.2 (reading) through the development and distribution of educational video for preschool and elementary school children and their parents. Another feature of the program is training parents and caregivers through community partnerships, which supports Objective 1.5 (families and communities).

FY 2000—$16,000,000

FY 2001—$16,000,000 (Requested budget)
Objective 1: Develop, produce, and distribute high-quality televised educational programming and written educational materials for preschool and elementary school children and their caregivers.

Indicator 1.1 Distribution of educational television programs: Ready to Learn (RTL) programs will reach an increasing number of viewers.

Targets and Performance Data

Assessment of Progress

Sources and Data Quality


Number of stations

Status: Number of stations, target met. A baseline has yet to be determined for number of viewers. The first series aired in the fall of 1999 and a second series will premiere in spring 2000.
Explanation: Positive movement towards target is expected.
The number of stations participating in RTL has grown from 48 in 1995 to 132 in 2000. The current number represents a potential reach of 99% of the nation. The total number of children and adults reached through RTL services is 5,503,842.
Annual programming analyses are collected routinely at a 6-month and year-end cycles from PBS/ RTL stations and CPB. The numbers of viewers will be entered to provide indicator analysis that can reflect viewers as well as stations.

Source: Performance Reports from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; PBS/RTL stations.

Frequency: Annually.

Next update: 2000.
Reports from producers, WGBH-Boston, and The Children’s Television Workshop.

Frequency: Annually.

Next update: 2000.
Validation Procedure: Data supplied by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Limitations of Data and Planned Improvements: While the number of RTL stations may increase, this does not ensure that the number of viewers will increase. Ratings for shows will be included in reports as available.

Viewer statistics are not available but will be available. A 2-year evaluative study of RTL Services is due by mid-2000.



Year

Actual Performance


Performance Targets

1995:

48




1999:

130

No target set

2000:

132

132

2001:




137

Number of viewers


1999:

First update 2000

Continuing increase

2000:




4.5 to 6 million adult and young viewers weekly

2001:

Continuing increase

Objective 2: Provide training to education personnel in the public television community so that they can train parents and caregivers to help children become ready to learn.



Indicator 2.1 Training for parents and caregivers: The number of parents and caregivers trained will increase to 600,000 in FY 2000.

Targets and Performance Data

Assessment of Progress

Sources and Data Quality

Number of parents and caregivers trained


Status: No target set, but progress is likely.
Explanation: Number of parents and caregivers trained is projected to increase in both 2000 and 2001.
In 1995, 23,187 caregivers were trained. In 1996, 74,049 caregivers were trained. In 1997, 98,015 caregivers were trained. In 1998, 146,392 caregivers were trained. In 1999, 309,454 caregivers were trained. We anticipate training 340,000 caregivers will be trained in 2000 and 380,000 in 2001.

Source: CPB Annual Performance Reports, 2000.

Frequency: Biennially.
Next Update: 2000.


Validation Procedure: Data supplied by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Limitations of Data and Planned Improvements: Combined with the ever-changing problems of meeting the needs of working parents and the schedule of overburdened caregivers.

Year

Actual Performance

Performance Targets


1995:

45,447




1996:

118,274

1997:

219,256

1998:

332,523

1999:

563,075

246,274

2000:




600,000

2001:

650,000



Key Strategies


Strategies Continued from 1999

None.
New or Strengthened Strategies



Monitor progress of current projects and monitor program quality. For example, review performance reports from the CPB, the Children’s Television Workshop, and WGBH-Boston.

  • To address the issue of collaboration, the program will participate in developing and supporting collaborations with other Federal agencies, foundations, and related early childhood groups.

  • To address the issue of distributing educational materials and information, the program will support the development and use of workshops to distribute educational material and information to caregivers and children.

  • To address the issue of providing information over the Web, the program will provide educational materials through the RTL Web site.

  • To address the issue of training quality, the program will evaluate the training quality and RTL programming and outreach activities.

  • To address the issue of training for RTL Coordinators, the program will support and develop workshops for training of RTL coordinators and caregivers.



How This Program Coordinates With Other Federal Activities


  • Other agencies (Federal and non-Federal) working in collaboration with RTL stations include HUD, Head Start, Child Care, HHS, DOJ, Maternal and Child Health, NAEYC, local AEYC affiliates, local hospitals, libraries, early childhood professional associations, institutions of higher education, local literacy initiatives and other mission-related organizations. Through these contacts, outreach services distribute children’s books and the RTL magazine—PBS Families/Para la Familia—provide parenting classes, support professional networking and continuous education experiences for families and education professionals.



Challenges to Achieving Program Goal


  • It is expected that challenges for RTL Coordinators will originate out of a wide range of socioeconomic, educational, and cultural differences that they represent for a program developed and implemented as a national model. Offering workshops that can meet the wide range of needs and learning styles requires skill and much preparation to be successful and thorough. Coordinators strive hard to provide the best quality sessions, resources, and materials for workshop participants in their diverse communities. The national RTL office works equally hard to support the coordinators with professional development and materials that reflect the current research, are thorough, accurate, and yet, flexible enough that coordinators can adapt to their needs.

Indicator Changes

From FY 1999 Annual Plan (two years old)

Adjusted—None.

Indicator Changes (continued)


Dropped

  • Indicators 1.2, 1.3, and 2.2 were dropped from the plan as output, rather than outcome, indicators.

From FY 2000 Annual Plan (last year’s)

Adjusted—None.

Dropped—None.

New—None.

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