CPBN and Hartford Public Schools To Create a Media Learning Lab
HARTFORD, Conn. (September 20, 2011) – Hartford Public Schools and the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN) signed a historic agreement today to build a unique learning laboratory where senior high school students at the Hartford Journalism & Media Academy (JMA) will receive continuous hands-on training in all aspects of media production and broadcast communication under the guidance of CPBN professionals.
Superintendent Christina M. Kishimoto and CPBN President & CEO Jerry Franklin held a signing ceremony at the Hartford Public Schools offices at 960 Main St., accompanied by Sheryl McLean-Houle, Principal of the Journalism & Media Academy; Kelvin Roldan, Director of Institutional Advancement, Hartford Public Schools; Meg Sakellarides, Chief Financial Officer, CPBN; and Dean Orton, Senior Vice President of Development and Media Services, CPBN.
“The quality of educational programs we can deliver when we have field experts working in partnership with us is what sets our reform apart from other school systems,” Dr. Kishimoto said.
Set to open in the 2013-2014 academic school year, the Learning Lab at CPBN will serve as the JMA’s satellite campus where all 100 seniors will spend each school day inside a fully immersive academic program of broadcast production, journalism and digital technology – a curriculum that supports the skills to a successful life, including written and verbal communication, critical thinking, responsibility and teamwork. Students will leave the program with their own digital portfolio of video and online projects, which can be used for college and career advancement.
Housed on the fourth and fifth floor of CPBN’s Asylum Hill headquarters at 1049 Asylum Ave., the Learning Lab will be a state-of-the-art, 20,000-square-foot space featuring classrooms, production studios, an auditorium, production facilities and media workstations. Farmington-based architectural and engineering firm Friar Associates designed the renovated space, and construction will begin in 2012.
CPBN has already made an investment in the project by hiring Donna Sodipo as Director of Education Services to work with JMA Principal McLean-Houle to oversee the project.
“No other public broadcasting institution in the country is taking a third of its facility and building a school there,” stated Franklin, President & CEO of CPBN. “It’s a trailblazing educational project, and we couldn’t be more proud to partner with Hartford Public Schools on it.”
The Learning Lab at CPBN is expected to cost $3.5 million, with investments secured by state government, foundations, corporations and private gifts. To date, over $1.6 million has been secured.
“CPBN is helping to bring authentic learning to our students by partnering with us to provide them with the unique opportunity to work and learn in professional environments, surrounded by experts in the media field, using advanced technological tools and having access to primary source research material,” said Principal McLean-Houle. “The partnership is essential to preparing our students for the college and workplace environment that await them after earning their diplomas.”
About The Hartford Public Schools
The Hartford Public Schools exist to provide all students with access to participation in a global economy through attainment of the academic standards set by the State of Connecticut and readiness for post-secondary education. It serves approximately 22,000 students in 48 schools. Additional information is available at www.hartfordschools.org
About Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network
The Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CBPN) includes CPTV and WNPR. CPTV, a media service of CPBN, is a locally and nationally recognized producer and presenter of quality public television programming, including UConn Women’s Basketball, original documentaries and educational programming. CPTV reaches 50,000 to 70,000 households daily and has built a reputation as a leader in children’s programming, including playing an historic role in bringing Barney & Friends™, Bob the Builder™ and Thomas & Friends™ to public television. CBPN also includes WNPR, an affiliate of National Public Radio, Public Radio International and American Public Media. WNPR serves almost 240,000 listeners weekly in Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island with news and information. Its award-winning local programming includes The Faith Middleton Show, The Colin McEnroe Show and Where We Live. Overall, the network brings a broad spectrum of public affairs, entertainment, sports and educational programming to viewers, listeners and readers. For more information, visit cpbn.org.