Find your next job fast at the Jan. 28 Virtual Career Fair. Register now.
Education

Media

November 22, 2000 1 min read

Mister Rogers’ Goodbye: Fred M. Rogers is leaving the neighborhood, after finishing production this month of the last five of nearly 1,000 episodes of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.”

The 30-minute television show for children has aired on Public Broadcasting Service stations since 1968, three years after it was first produced in Pittsburgh.

Mr. Rogers, 72, will now focus on developing two Web sites connected with the show, writing books, and creating a planetarium program at the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh, according to Hedda Sharapan, a spokeswoman at Family Communications Inc., the Pittsburgh- based production company founded by Mr. Rogers, who is its chairman and chief executive officer.

PBS will broadcast reruns of the show.

“It’s conceivable they’ll never end on public broadcasting,” said Peggy Charren, the founder of Action for Children’s Television. “Every three years, a new set of children is aged 2 to 5, and their concerns don’t change, no matter how hair styles and skirt lengths do,” she said.

The show has always addressed young children’s universal concerns, such as fears about slipping down the bathtub drain or parents going out in the evening and not coming back.

Over the years, though, Mr. Rogers broadened the scope of the show as he perceived changes in society. “He noticed that the disabled child was just about invisible on television,” Ms. Charren said. “He had as a guest a child with a brace all the way up his leg. He demonstrated how the brace straightened the leg.”

In recent years, the program adjusted to societal changes even more. “Between shows 500 and 1,000, what he did was look at what was missing from television and what was happening in the lives of children,” Ms. Charren said.

That led to addressing subjects as varied as divorce and classical music—the latter featuring a visit to the cellist Yo Yo Ma. “In a piece equally delicious for adults as children, he asked, ‘how did you happen to learn to play the cello?’ And then had him play a classical piece,” Ms. Charren recalled.

That segment revealed the respect Mr. Rogers has for children. “What a rare producer it is who thinks of preschoolers and Bach in one breath,” said Ms. Charren.

— Andrew Trotter atrotter@epe.org

A version of this article appeared in the November 22, 2000 edition of Education Week

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Branding Matters. Learn From the Pros Why and How
Learn directly from the pros why K-12 branding and marketing matters, and how to do it effectively.
Content provided by EdWeek Top School Jobs
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
How to Make Learning More Interactive From Anywhere
Join experts from Samsung and Boxlight to learn how to make learning more interactive from anywhere.
Content provided by Samsung
Teaching Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table With Education Week: How Educators Can Respond to a Post-Truth Era
How do educators break through the noise of disinformation to teach lessons grounded in objective truth? Join to find out.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Special Education Teachers
Lancaster, PA, US
Lancaster Lebanon IU 13
Speech Therapists
Lancaster, PA, US
Lancaster Lebanon IU 13
BASE Program Site Director
Thornton, CO, US
Adams 12 Five Star Schools
Director of Information Technology
Montpelier, Vermont
Washington Central UUSD

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: January 13, 2021
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Obituary In Memory of Michele Molnar, EdWeek Market Brief Writer and Editor
EdWeek Market Brief Associate Editor Michele Molnar, who was instrumental in launching the publication, succumbed to cancer.
5 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: December 9, 2020
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of articles from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read