Public Educational Media

Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood
©The Fred Rogers Company

Educational television media has expanded to include more diverse and innovative programs across the arc of one’s lifespan. In addition, access to these programs continues to widen through ever-growing platforms for public media distribution, including children’s television.

The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations are known nationally and globally for their 50-year history of support for public television. Early AVDF philanthropic partnerships included PBS stations such as WGBH (Boston), WETA (D.C.), WQED (Pittsburgh), WNET (New York) and KQED (San Francisco).

Since 1974, the Foundations' Trustees have focused on national broadcasts for children’s educational programs with lasting value, such as Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Cyberchase, Reading Rainbow, Between the Lions, and the newly launched mathematics program Peg + Cat. Our most visible and longstanding philanthropic partnership has been with the nation’s leading documentary filmmaker, Ken Burns, whose films include Civil War, Baseball, The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, The Roosevelts, and The Vietnam War, among others.

Public Educational Media grants will be considered in the following general areas:

  • Programs in childhood literacy and character development
  • Interfaith leadership and religious literacy
  • Documentary films that promote intellectual inquiry and “big ideas”
  • Historical documentaries
  • Environmental and science films that raise awareness and teach the public about environmental stewardship and solutions
  • Apolitical, timely, and innovative media programming

Grants support capstone funding to complete production for major series that are assured of national airing by PBS or other national distribution platforms. Grant proposals should highlight innovative uses of technology that will enhance community outreach and contribute to teaching audiences of all ages. Preference is given equally to children’s series and programs of enduring value on subjects such as history, culture, and science. Consideration is given on occasion to stand-alone programs of exceptional merit with a confirmed national airing. Educational television programs whose primary purpose is advocacy fall outside the program guidelines and will not be accepted.

Grant amounts

Public Educational Media grants may range $250,000 - $400,000.  Click HERE for more information about grant types and amounts.  

When & How to Apply
Please refer to the information in Grantseeking Organizations.

Submitted material related to the grant proposal will not be returned.
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