Originally published May 5, 2020 on WSLS.com.
By Bridget Curran
Blue Ridge PBS is going back to its educational roots.
Starting Monday, they’re providing new programming for kids at home. It’s called Southwest Virginia TV Classroom and it will air weekdays from 12 – 1 p.m.
In 2012, Blue Ridge PBS lost state funding, which effectively shut down their education department. And while they still don’t have the funding for this, it’s something they feel they need to do, especially during this pandemic.
“Some kids don’t have a computer,” said Will Anderson, president and CEO of Blue Ridge PBS. “Some kids don’t have internet access and this basically gets education (well you know everyone has a TV), it gets education into the homes. And you know, we don’t know where this is going to go; we don’t know how long we’re going to have to do this, but we know we have to reach every child, and this is the way to do that.”
It’s all made possible through partnerships with local teachers, experts from regional businesses, and Roanoke city and county schools. Some teachers will come into their studio to film, and others will teach from home, but everything is done with social distancing in mind.