The program is a mixture of narrative-style packages, graphic information and interview segments meant to inform the public about events, news and achievements in MPS.
Four on-camera hosts who are native speakers, represent each language and also serve as voice-over talent for narrative segments.
"It is very important to broadcast in multiple languages, so that parents can understand the message at first hand," said Abdulrahman Adem, host of "School Matters" Somali edition, and Somali family liaison for the district. "Broadcasting in our native languages gives parents and community a sense of inclusion and belonging."
With more than 20 years of producing educational programming, five of which include developing and producing the previous English-only version of "School Matters," iDream.TV was primed for the challenge of bringing the program to life in multiple languages.
"Reaching our audience with respectful and culturally appropriate material that helps parents help their children succeed in school is our goal, " said Paul Auguston, Artistic Director for iDream.TV.
According to Auguston, there are many challenges associated with putting together a culturally accessible program. Episode segment ideas selected by the MPS communications department. The production crew shoots host introductions and endings, segments, and other supporting footage at different locations throughout the district, then assembles the English version of the program first. After the English version is completed, the Hmong, Spanish and Somali translate content in their native languages, then record their voice-over track for the segments in-studio.
"It can be a very challenging edit at times," said Nate Matson, Lead Editor for iDream.TV. "There are many pieces to the puzzle, including culturally specific music and language appropriate graphics, but we try to make each show as standalone and unique as possible."
"School Matters" episodes and other content can be seen at http://www.idream.tv/
"School Matters" airs on a rotating schedule daily on MPS Channel 15 in Minneapolis, and simulcast stream and on demand via the MPS website. New episodes are produced monthly throughout the school year.
iDream.tv Production Team: Paul Auguston, Edie French, Nathan Matson, Julie Kistler, Ryan Melling
Minneapolis Public Schools Team: Heather Peters, Tania Garcia-Estrada, Vang Lor, Abdulrahman Adem
"School Matters" schedule on MPS Channel 15 http://www.mpls.k12.mn.us:
All versions: T/W/Sat/Sun at 4pm, 8am, 1pm; M/Thu/Fri at 7am and 11pm
English: M/Thu/Fri at 7pm
Spanish: T/W/Sat/Sun at 9pm; M/Thu/Fr at 2pm
Hmong: T/W/Sat/Sun at 11pm; M/ Thu/Fri at 4pm
Somali: T/W/Sat/Sun at 10pm; M/Thu/Fri at 3pm
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