Mitchell Pitches PBS Shows

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PBS President Pat Mitchell is joining the massive campaign to preserve noncommercial TV funding, and money for kids programming in particular.

Mitchell will hold a press conference call Wednesday to discuss "how PBS’ educational programs serve as a vital resource for children, parents and educators and how threatened cuts to federal funding of these programs would have a negative impact on educating Americans."

In a smart PR move, Mitchell will be joined by a home-schooling parent who uses PBS as an educational resource in a home curriculum. Home schoolers are more frequently allied, either in fact or perception, with conservative Republicans, and the Bush Administration knock on some of PBS' kids shows--Postcards From Buster the most prominent example--is that they are not sufficiently curriculum based.

Thhe decision by House appropriations committees last week to cut noncom funding by $200 million has prompted a flurry of activity from Democrats and public TV supporters. The issue is compounded by ongoing criticism of Corporation for Public Broadcasting Chairman Ken Tomlinson for efforts to "balance" noncom radio and TV with conservative programming.

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