Media Column

June 20, 1990 2 min read

Many school boards today have their regular meetings televised to the community, usually on a local cable channel. In Los Angeles, such telecasts appear on KLCS-tv, a public-broadcasting station owned by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

In what is believed to be a first, the station’s telecasts of board meetings were nominated this year for a local Emmy, an award sponsored by the local broadcasting community.

The telecasts of the meetings, which can last from 6 to 10 hours or more, were nominated last month in the category of best public-affairs show.

However, the production lost out to its only competition, “Fight Back with David Horowitz,” a consumer-affairs show that is also syndicated nationally.

“It’s hard to compare us to ‘Fight Back,”’ Robert V. Greene, who produces the school-board telecasts for the station, recently told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s whether we’re going to look at which Ziploc bags work better or who gets eliminated from the budget.”

Mr. Greene noted that while his production did not win this year, the nomination was a sign that such meeting coverage was attracting greater interest.

Although no ratings are available, a one-time survey by the station showed that the meeting telecast had 125,000 viewers at any one time, he said.

In other award news, the advocacy group Action for Children’s Television recently gave out its annual honors to the best programming for young viewers.

Among the public-television shows garnering honors were “Long Ago and Far Away,” a storytelling series produced by WGBH-tv in Boston; “WonderWorks,” a drama and literature series produced by WQED-tv in Pittsburgh, and “Shining Time Station,” produced by WNET-tv in New York.

The Cable News Network’s “CNN Newsroom” show for high-school students won an act award in the cable-TV category, as did Nickelodeon’s “Make the Grade,” a quiz show for teenagers, and Home Box Office’s “Babar” series.

Beginning later this summer, the Arts & Entertainment cable-television network will present a special schedule of hour-long, commercial-free programming for use in education.

“A&E Classroom” will begin Aug. 27 and will be broadcast at 7 A.M. Eastern time Monday through Friday. Programs will be grouped under a different theme each day. The themes are history, drama, performing arts, biography, and archeology/anthropology.

The Arts & Entertainment channel is available on 5,400 cable systems serving 46 million households.--mw

A version of this article appeared in the June 20, 1990 edition of Education Week as Media Column