The mission of ideastream is to strengthen our communities. ideastream pursues this mission as a multiple media public service organization by providing distinctive, thought-provoking programs and services that enlighten, inspire, educate and entertain.
In 2001, the Boards of WVIZ/PBS and 90.3 WCPN consolidated all resources in ideastream, a new multiple media public service organization that applies the power of media to education and public service. The purpose of consolidation was to leverage assets to achieve greater cost effective community service using all forms of media.
In 2002, ideastream launched a model partnership with the Playhouse Square Foundation to build a regional resource for the arts, technology, and education. Following a combined capital campaign completed in 2005, the Idea Center® became the headquarters of ideastream and a home for Playhouse Square Community Engagement and Education as well as a community gathering place. In 2006, ideastream completed its physical consolidation of all staff and production facilities and moved into the Idea Center.
Today, ideastream is the consolidation of eight different programs and services that had previously been independently managed:
- WVIZ/PBS, with 5 channels of public TV service, and training for teachers and caregivers in the use of technology for education
- 90.3 WCPN, Northeast Ohio’s NPR news and public affairs station
- WCLV Classical 104.9
- Civic Commons, a community engagement platform
- management on behalf of Ohio’s public broadcasting stations of the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau
- management of The Ohio Channel, a statewide public affairs television channel available by broadcast and on the web
- management on behalf of a consortium of local K-12 school systems of NOTA (North Ohio Technology Association, a broadband interactive distance learning network for K-12 schools)
- SMART (Science and Math Achievement Required for Tomorrow), a professional development program for teachers
ideastream is public broadcasting and much more. It is a multiple media public service organization that applies the power of media to education, culture and citizenship.
Current Programs and Activities
ideastream is recognized locally and nationally as an innovative model for public media and distinguishes itself from other media organizations through a deep and abiding commitment to community partnerships, civic engagement, and innovative and creative use of media. ideastream acquires, creates and distributes high-quality radio, television and web content that focuses on areas that have been identified as priorities by Northeast Ohio residents: arts and culture; education; health information; community assets and challenges; and issues relating to the State of Ohio.
ideastream also continues to be recognized as a model of excellence for the integration of program content across media platforms. Currently, WVIZ/PBS presents educational, cultural and informational programs 24 hours a day, including 12 hours each weekday that are devoted to educational programming for children. 90.3 WCPN and WCLV 104.9 offer 24 hours of news, information and music programming each day. ideastream’s radio and television content is also available anytime, anywhere on the web in a variety of forms and places. Learn more about stations and services here.
Moreover, ideastream is considered the state’s largest classroom, delivering broadcasts directly to Ohio students via state-of-the-art interactive video distance learning programs aired in classrooms. During the 2017-2018 school year, ideastream provided enhanced learning opportunities to 39,275 students in 306 schools and more than 2,966 educators participated in 265 professional development workshops. Ohio educators consistently rely on ideastream for the quality training sessions on the uses of the latest classroom technology as well as on superior professional development opportunities in the Idea Center learning laboratories.
In addition to WVIZ/PBS, World, and Create channels, ideastream programs two local TV channels that feed educational and instructional programming to the Akron Public Schools and the Cleveland Metropolitan Schools. On behalf of Ohio’s public broadcasting stations, ideastream manages the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau and Ohio Government Television in Columbus. These stations represent a new concept in public affairs programming that combines state-wide coverage of issues that impact Ohio with locally-produced PBS programs to give a statewide perspective on subjects that affect the lives of all Ohioans.
Who We Serve
ideastream programs and services are used by 2.8 million people in a typical month, primarily from an 18-county service area which includes Ashland, Ashtabula, Carroll, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Holmes, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, Richland, Stark, Summit, Tuscarawas, Trumbull and Wayne Counties. Programs and services include: television viewing, listening and streaming radio content, accessing content through the website www.ideastream.org, accessing on-demand video, participation in education services professional development, and engaging in ideastream public dialogue events.