Learn Something New. Channel 2 and You.

Only a few years ago it was a dream, and an uncertain one a\ that. A second public television station broadcasting educational programs throughout North Texas seemed like too much to hope for. After all Chanuel 13. which had signed on ;on as educational station in 1960, was going strong, broadcasting classroom TV to students across half of Texas. Why another Station? In fact,a second station was needed; Channel 13 was devoting up to sixty hours a week -or close to half of the available broadcast time- to classroom TV and college-credit telecourses. leaving precious few hours tor more general public TV fare, and forcing some educational programs to air at times that many viewers found inconvenient, Out of this situation the dream was horn. Some of those dreamers were members of the- Denton Channel 2 Foundation, Others were part of the Public Communication Foundation for North Texas (PCFNT). then-licensee of KERA Channel 13 and 90. The Denton inundation and PCFNT attempted to secure the license to operate Channel 2. which had been reserved by the Federal Communications Commission lor non-ami-menial use in the 1950s. In l985, after several years of separate activity, the two onranizaiions merged to form North Texas Public Broadcasting Inc. (NTPB) and began to lay the groundwork fur KDTN Channel 2. which takes to the air Thursday, station. “The birth of Channel 2 is a milestone for public broadcasting in North Texas,” said Dr. Richard J. Meyer, NTPB president and chief executive officer. “One of the most gratifying aspects of all is [he wide range of support received during the fund-raising phase from individuals, businesses, and foundations throughout the region, and especially in Denton, where KDTN is licensed.” Meyer also credited the Meadows Foundation as being crucial in NTPB’s success in raising the $3.7 million required to launch KDTN. fie said a $550,000 challenge grant issued by the foundation spurred the final round of giving that put the- campaign over the top. Of that record challenge, $250,000 was used to augment the amount contributed in Denton. giving that city a campaign total of more than $600.000. Major corporate contributors to the KDTN capital campaign in-clude- the Tandy Corporation of Fort Worth, Sun Exploration and Production Company in Dallas, and the Aileen S. Andrew Foundation, which has a manufacturing facility

in Denton. In addition to the Meadows Foundation. major foundation support was provided by the Anne Burnett and Charles D. Tandy Foundation and the Amon G. Carter Foundation, both of Fort Worth, and the Eugene McDermott Foundation in Dallas. The NTPB board of directors was instrumental in raising well over a million dollars from its own members.

As an educational public station, Channel 2 will benefit from its location in Denton, which is widely known as an educational and cultural center. The new station will draw its programming from KERA and PBS, from the Dallas County and Tarrant County community college systems, and from Texas Woman’s University (TWU), the University of North Texas (UNT), and other area institutions of higher learning. Channel 2’s Denton studio will be on the campus of TWU, and students from that school and UNT will assist in production duties and enjoy the learning benefits of such an arrangement. In addition, UNT will provide Channel 2 with a mobile television van.

Further collegiate involvement in Channel 2 will come by way of the Presidents’ Council, an organization composed of college and university presidents from throughout the Channel 2 broadcast area.

So what, exactly, can viewers expect to find on Channel 2? For starters, the station will broadcast a full range of educational and instructional programs serving more than one million kindergarten-through-college-level students in more than 300 colleges, school districts, and private schools throughout its viewing area, including the Dallas and Fort Worth independent school districts, the Dallas County Community College District, and Tarrant County Junior College.

Besides in-school programming and telecourses, the new station’s schedule will include such public affairs, general interest, and family features as The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, American Playhouse, and The Nightly Business Report, as well as special documentaries from KERA and PBS. Two special highlights of the coming months are The World of Ideas With Bill Moyers, a five-night-per-week series of half-hour programs beginning Monday, September 12, at 7:30 p.m. and looking at America today in light of the coming presidential election; and Ethics in America, a penetrating new series developed by Fred Friendly and moderated by Harvard University law professor Arthur Miller. This ten-part series will debut on Channel 2 in January 1989.

Channel 2 plans to broadcast its signal throughout North Texas from transmitter and tower facilities located in Cedar Hill, the highest point in Dallas County. The station’s signal coverage will duplicate that of Channel 13, blanketing an area from Athens in the east to Mineral Wells in the west, and from Waco in the south to Lake Texoma in the north.

Viewers can get their first look at Channel 2 Thursday, September 1, at 7 p.m. when NTPB officials flip the switch and Channel 2: On the Air is broadcast simultaneously over both Channel 2 and Channel 13 to inaugurate the new station. Channel 2: On the Air, produced by News Addition’s Peggy Callahan, is the story behind the station, a record of its birth, and a celebration of its possibilities.

Today, as Channel 2 goes on the air, those possibilities seem limitless. There’s the chance for generations of young people to tune in to an electronic classroom with the world of knowlege within reach; for college students and busy professionals to study at home, to brush up on vital skills; and for everyone within the station’s reach to expand their horizons by learning something new each day.

Of course, viewers of Channel 2 are not the only folks who will benefit from the new station; the effect on Channel 13’s programming will be noticeable immediately, as the broadcast hours that were previously devoted to educational fare become available for more general public television programming, including daytime repeats of primetime programs, more how-to shows, feature films, and added programming for the whole family. An even greater variety of TV worth watching, in other words, from North Texas’ original public television station.

Ever since the first television signals were transmitted, a debate has raged about the promise of the medium. For some, television is a Vast wasteland”; for others, it’s the most powerful and potentially beneficial medium in history. In the case of Channel 2, the scale tips far toward the good; it’s an efficient, cost-effective medium for bringing Texas education into the twenty-first century. It’s a new partnership in learning: Channel 2 and you.

Ed Brock, an award-winning film animator and principal with the Dallas-based design firm of Richards, Brock, Miller, Mitchell & Associates, donated his services and created a series of animated logos which serve as Channel 2s station identifications (IDs). Brack designed the four animations to graphically convey the birth of Channel 2 as a full-time educational and public affairs television station.

Dallas composer Bert Ligon volunteered his time and talent to develop a sprightly jazz tune that will serve as Channel 2’s theme music. Performing the various arrangements of the tune were music students from the University of North Texas (UNT), including several members of the internationally renowned One O’clock Lab Band. Ligon will receive three credit hours toward course work as a master’s degree candidate in music/jazz studies at UNT lor his efforts.


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