The UK's key provider of high-quality TV programmes for schools has become a victim of Coalition Government cuts. Teachers TV, which has more than 4,000 subscribers, will close its website on April 29 following the termination of its contract, worth around £10.7 million a year, by the Department for Education.
Where is still uncertainty about the future of the materials – thought to be made up of around 4,000 15-minute videos and related content – and a brief statement by the DfE gives little guidance, a group of teachers have downloaded all of them to share with other teachers. (see below and #saveTTV on Twitter.)
Teachers TV closed its broadcasting services on Freeview, Sky and Virgin Media in 2010, and continued as a popular web-only service with more than 3,115 different videos viewed every week.
Teachers TV reckons it has filmed more than 5,400 teachers in 2,500 schools, and more than 1,900 educational experts, advisers and academics. The videos were tailored for key figures in school communities – teachers, leaders, classroom assistants and administration staff – and were widely viewed. In one four-month period in 2010 videos were streamed more than 1.6 million times.
Users have until April 29 to view and download Teachers TV content. Videos that have been stored or made available under the Teachers TV viewing licence should be removed after April 29, but those stored or made available under the Creative Archive licence can be kept in use as long as their storage and use comply with the terms of that licence.
A brief campaign on Twitter initiated by Leon Cych (pictured), of Learn 4 Life, has ensured that all the Teachers TV were downloaded within days by a collective of teachers who will catalogue them and work out the best ways of sharing them with other teachers under the terms of the Creative Archive licence.
Teachers TV has posted advice for users as a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) on its site. Any other enquiries should be directed to
Learn 4 Life.
A Google Doc detailing the archive of downloaded Teachers TV videos can be viewed here.