Sesame Workshop and CPB Partner on Sesame Street in Communities Initiative for Rural and Underserved Communities

New Program Engages 10 PBS Stations Nationwide to Expand Early Childhood Programs as part of Sesame Street’s 50th Anniversary

November 6, 2019

(New York, NY) November 6, 2019—Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, is partnering with local PBS stations serving rural communities across the country to enhance their early childhood education programs through the Sesame Street in Communities program. Made possible with generous support from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), the station engagement initiative includes training for local providers who serve preschool children and community events for families, all using the Sesame Street in Communities resources.

Marking the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street and 50 years of partnership with PBS, the initiative deepens Sesame Workshop’s longstanding commitment to using the power of public television to bring critical early learning to children across the country in communities big and small. Sesame Workshop worked closely with WNET New York Public Media—a partner on the Sesame Street in Communities initiative—to select and collaborate with the 10 stations. Each station is partnering with local early childhood programs serving rural families to support the early learning basics of language, literacy, and math. The selected stations are:

  • Alabama Public Television
  • Arizona PBS
  • Georgia Public Broadcasting
  • KLRN San Antonio
  • KSPS Spokane
  • KTOO Juneau
  • Louisiana Public Broadcasting
  • Nebraska Educational Television
  • WFSU Tallahassee
  • WXXI Rochester

“PBS stations have long been community ambassadors of Sesame Street, and we’re thrilled to build on our 50-year partnership by working with stations serving rural communities across the country,” said Steve Youngwood, President, Media & Education and Chief Operating Officer, Sesame Workshop. “By leveraging our Sesame Street in Communities resources, stations will be able to enhance their programs to help children across their community grow smarter, stronger, and kinder.”

“Early childhood education is the foundation of a lifetime of learning and development,” said Pat Harrison, CPB president and CEO. “CPB is committed to ensuring that families and young children in rural and urban communities have access to public media’s trusted educational content and services aimed at helping young people achieve through learning. To help celebrate the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street, we’re proud to support this exciting rural community initiative to extend the work of Sesame Street in Communities.”

Each participating station is recruiting and training a minimum of 50 community providers in their area on how to use the Sesame Street in Communities resources in their work with young children and families. Additionally, each station is hosting an event celebrating Sesame Street’s 50th anniversary and the station’s success in serving their communities, featuring a walkaround Sesame Street character. Earlier this fall, Sesame Workshop hosted the 10 stations for a training in New York City on the Sesame Street in Communities resources.

Sesame Street in Communities provides easy-to-use tools for community providers and caregivers on the toughest issues children face, particularly on topics where there are few resources for young children. Since launching in 2015, Sesame Street and Communities has supported families on topics ranging from parental addiction to family homelessness—giving children the tools they need to build resilience and grow smarter, stronger, and kinder. The materials, which include videos, storybooks, digital interactives, games, and professional development resources, are available for free—in English and Spanish—at


Sesame Workshop is the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, the pioneering television show that has been reaching and teaching children since 1969. Today, Sesame Workshop is an innovative force for change, with a mission to help kids everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder. We’re active in more than 150 countries, serving vulnerable children through a wide range of media, formal education, and philanthropically-funded social impact programs, each grounded in rigorous research and tailored to the needs and cultures of the communities we serve. For more information, please visit


The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967, is the steward of the federal government’s investment in public broadcasting. It helps support the operations of more than 1,500 locally owned and operated public television and radio stations nationwide. CPB is also the largest single source of funding for research, technology and program development for public radio, television and related online services. For more information, visit, follow us on Twitter @CPBmedia, Facebook and LinkedIn and subscribe for other updates.


WNET is America’s flagship PBS station: parent company of New York’s THIRTEEN and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV, the statewide public media network in New Jersey. Through its new ALL ARTS multi-platform initiative, its broadcast channels, three cable services (THIRTEEN PBSKids, Create and World) and online streaming sites, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than five million viewers each month. WNET produces and presents a wide range of acclaimed PBS series, including Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, and the nightly interview program Amanpour and Company. In addition, WNET produces numerous documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings, as well as multi-platform initiatives addressing poverty and climate. Through THIRTEEN Passport and WLIW Passport, station members can stream new and archival THIRTEEN, WLIW and PBS programming anytime, anywhere.

Photo: Children at the Sesame Street 50th Anniversary Hometown Celebration in O’Neill, NE, made wands like Abby Cadabby’s and learned that everyone has their own special “magic” power. Credit: NET, Nebraska's PBS Station.