It is 1964 and high in the sky, flying in a figure-eight formation over a 200-mile radius and six Midwestern states, is a plane with a large 24-foot antennae hanging from its belly. Transmitting 24 separate courses recorded ahead of time then played back to member schools in six states, the Midwest Program on Airborne Television Instruction (MPATI) was designed to meet the need of providing educational television to a wider audience. In the late 1950s, the FCC decided that certain channels would be allocated for non-commercial educational use. Schools were bursting with students; teachers were in high demand and educators wanted television classroom instruction to ease their burden. Offering simultaneous programs to schools across the country similar to commercial networks seemed impossible. Hence, the Midwest Program on Airborne Television Instruction, a not-for-profit consortium of educational institutions and television producers, was born.
Education | Educational Administration and Supervision
Tracey, M. W., & Stefaniak, J. E. (2014). MPATI: The Midwest Program on Airborne Television Instruction (1959-1971). International Journal of Designs for Learning, 5(2).