The Public Broadcasting Service on Thursday responded to comments Romney made in the first presidential debate Wednesday night about Sesame Street’s icon, Big Bird. “I’m going to stop the subsidy to PBS. I’m going to stop other things. I like PBS. I love Big Bird. I actually like you, too, “ Romney said to presidential debate moderator Jim Lehrer. “But I’m not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for things we don’t need.” Romney said he would slash public broadcasting as one approach to tackling the nation’s debt.
“We are very disappointed that PBS became a political target in the Presidential debate last night. Governor Romney does not understand the value the American people place on public broadcasting and the outstanding return on investment the system delivers to our nation,” PBS said in a statement. “As a stated supporter of education, Governor Romney should be a champion of public broadcasting, yet he is willing to wipe out services that reach the vast majority of Americans, including underserved audiences, such as children who cannot attend preschool and citizens living in rural areas.
Meanwhile, PBS Kids is researching how kids use a number of different technological platforms and new technologies to learn certain concepts. Watch Sara DeWitt, vice president of PBS Kids Interactive, elaborate on what PBS is learning about kids and technology below:
“Does a child who plays with all of those come away with a better understanding of that math concept than a child who just interacts with one? That’s what we’re researching right now,” DeWitt said.
PBS is developing content that goes far beyond TV – video content, mobile apps, interactive online games, whiteboard games, and more. “It’s promising … kids are very engaged with their technology,” DeWitt said of PBS’ research.”We are always thinking about how new technologies affect children and how we can co-opt lots of new technologies for education so we feel like it’s really important to be paying attention to what’s happening out here.”
On the same day it responded to Romney’s Big Bird comments during the presidential debate, PBS also introduced valuePBS.org, a resource to learn about how PBS and local stations provide content and services benefiting communities, education, kids and parents. It also Tweeted “PBS is trusted, valued and essential. See why at http://www.valuepbs.org . (please retweet!)”
“For more than forty years, Big Bird has embodied the public broadcasting mission – harnessing the power of media for the good of every citizen, regardless of where they live or their ability to pay,” PBS said in its statement. “Our system serves as a universally accessible resource for education, history, science, arts and civil discourse.”
- For more daily expert updates, follow genConnect on Twitter and Facebook.
- To stay on top of the latest posts, as well as the contributions from other experts on the site: Sign Up for genConnect.