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Yavapai College to offer educational TV

PRESCOTT – A new digital television station that will offer informative, educational programming to the general public is in the works.

According to Yavapai College Distributed Learning Director Angie Parker, Yavapai Educational Television (YETV), Channel 67, will do test programs during January and begin broadcasting 24 hours a day, seven days a week in March.

YETV is a partnership between Yavapai College, the YETV Consortium, and Cable One. It will be the college's primary television media outlet and available through Cable One's basic service.

Parker told college governing board members Tuesday that programming will be "of professional quality with less than 10 percent of the programming produced locally." Local examples are Bradshaw Mountain High School's student – produced productions and Yavapai Regional Medical Center's Health Care series.

For-profit companies and community agencies will provide televised instruction on a variety of topics including investing, travel, cooking, senior aerobics and fire prevention.

YETV will be a key element in helping Yavapai College provide for the "life-long educational needs of the diverse communities of Yavapai County," Parker said.

Cable One has agreed to provide the educational channel for the community, Parker said. Also, the City of Prescott and the towns of Chino Valley and Prescott Valley are supporting it through franchise agreement changes. YETV is submitting a grant application to the Rural Utilities Services in Washington, D.C., to help pay for a studio and broadcast center at Yavapai College.

Underwriting from the Yavapai-Prescott Tribe, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott College and other entities will cover the cost of connecting to Cable One.

Yavapai College will provide the majority of the initial programming by adding 15 new telecourses. They will include classes on computer technology and general education topics leading to Associate of Arts degrees as well as a series of four classes spotlighting senior citizens' educational and medical needs.

Parker said the Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe now offers no televised information to the community. However, new programming will allow time for a native language "story hour" for children, airing of tribal cultural events, and the sharing of tribal and city issues.

YETV will educate middle- and high-school youth by offering two new venues. First, students will have the opportunity for televised field trips. Second, students in high school broadcast classes will see their productions aired across the region, thereby giving the community an "inside view" of today's classrooms.

Parker said the new station is necessary because the growing tri-city region has "inadequate access to medical and educational instruction due to miles of unpaved roads, a multitude of high elevations, and a single cable television station which provides community, governmental and education access programming to the area." She predicts Channel 67 will serve 51,000 homes.

YETV is interested in programming that the community wants. Those who wish to suggest topics may call Parker at 776-2070.

Contact Louise Koniarski at lkoniarski@prescottaz.com.

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