Statement on FY 2010 Senate Appropriations Bill

Posted by PBS Publicity on

Today, the Senate Appropriations Full Committee approved the FY 2010 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill, recommending a $450 million two-year advance appropriation for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) for FY 2012 ($430 million was provided for FY 2011); $36 million for public television and radio digital conversion, content and services; $10.7 million for Ready To Teach, an initiative providing online professional development for PreK-12 teachers, coaches and mentors; $28.5 million for Ready To Learn, an initiative that focuses on literacy in young children, especially those from low-income families; and $10 million for fiscal stabilization grants to public television and radio stations, which have been negatively impacted by the economic downturn.

Earlier this month, the House approved $440 million for CPB; $40 million for fiscal stabilization; $36 million to continue the digital transition and $25.4 million for Ready To Learn.

Ready To Learn funds PBS Raising Readers, a literacy initiative that uses the power of public media to building reading skills at home, at school, in child care and in the community.

Ready To Teach, which supports PBS TeacherLine - an online professional development resource for educators - was not funded in the House bill, but $10.7 million for the program was provided in the Senate bill. PBS TeacherLine provides graduate credit and recertification opportunities through more than 130 courses that span the entire preK-12 curriculum.

"PBS is grateful to both the House and Senate committees for acknowledging the vital service public broadcasting provides to the American people and the harrowing challenges faced by local stations in today's economic climate" said PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger. "We understand the members were faced with many difficult choices in allocating limited resources among many important priorities. I would like to extend our deepest thanks to the Senate subcommittee - especially Senators Inouye, Cochran, Harkin and Shelby - for their faith in the Ready to Teach program and the outstanding contribution TeacherLine is making to American education."