Joins Syracuse City School District to provide educational programming for students amid school closures

Starting in April, The Reading League will host a daily 30-minute live educational television broadcasts on WCNY, Central New York’s PBS affiliate. The program will run from 2:30 to 3 p.m. every weekday for the duration of WCNY’s “TV Classroom” broadcasting.

As schools across the country close their doors in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and many children without internet access, teachers and parents are looking for distance-learning opportunities to replace the typical classroom setting. WCNY’s TV Classroom programming will help bridge this access gap, providing free and consistent curriculum teaching in core subjects for kindergarten through 12th grades from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays for the duration of New York state’s school closures.

The Reading League’s program, called “Letters and Language with Katie and Kelli,” will be hosted by two leading TRL coaches and longtime educators, Kelli Johnson and Katie Sojewicz. The program will primarily serve an elementary-level student audience and focus daily on phonological awareness, letter-sound knowledge and the blending of words and phrases. Like all TRL programming, the televised lessons will be deeply rooted in evidence-based reading instruction.

“WCNY has been a long-time community partner and resource,” said Reading League CEO and President Maria Murray. “The Reading League appreciates the opportunity to build on our ongoing support of educators, parents and students during this challenging time. More than ever, the continuity of learning is critical, and we want to do our part by providing reading instruction that we believe can help more young people stay on track academically.”

“We are committed to providing educational opportunities to audiences of all ages,” said WCNY President and CEO Mitch Gelman. “The Reading League team provides the knowledge and experience regarding reading instruction that we know can support our community right now and we look forward to continuing this work with them and the Syracuse City School District.”

The broadcast will reach WCNY viewers in 19 surrounding counties – approximately one-third of Upstate New York – with an audience of more than 1.8 million people. In addition to the live broadcasts, the program episodes will live on the WCNY website and be shared on TRL’s social media channels for a national audience.

WCNY’s global connection channel in the Syracuse area is 24.3 for antenna, 1276 for Spectrum digital, 467 for Fios, and 24-2 for DirecTV. The network will stream all shows live via Vimeo at, where TV Classroom content will also be archived after it airs.

By martha

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