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New Educational TV Channel for Schools To Debut

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Educational television will get a boost next year when the Annenberg/Corporation for Public Broadcasting Projects launches a new 10-hour-per-day channel of programming.

The free channel, the latest telecommunications venture by the Annenberg/CPB Projects, is scheduled to debut in January. It will be distributed digitally to public and private schools through a recently launched satellite.

The channel will exclude commercial advertising.

In a written statement, Scott Roberts, the Annenberg/CPB director, described the channel as a "no strings attached" gift to the nation's education system.

Programming on the Annenberg/CPB channel will consist solely of the projects' own education series, which were previously available on videocassette and broadcast as "telecourses" on local PBS channels throughout the country.

The new programming will also incorporate into its 10-hour daily schedule an existing channel for professional development for math and science teachers.

Created last year by the Annenberg/CPB Math and Science Project, in conjunction with Harvard University and the Smithsonian Institution, this original channel has been aired free to 10,000 schools.

Doubling Participation?

David Pelizzari, a spokesman for the project, said the new satellite channel could double the number of schools receiving Annenberg/CPB Projects broadcasts by the end of next year.

"The first step will be to have a focused home on one channel for our current programming," Mr. Pelizzari said.

Upcoming programs include series on science education reform and on English as a second language. According to Mr. Pelizzari, original programming will continue to air on PBS first, and then make its way to the new channel.

The original Annenberg/CPB Project was founded in 1981 to help schools and local organizations use telecommunications technologies to improve students' learning. The project was joined 10 years later by the Annenberg/CPB Math and Science Project.

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