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Encinal School Launches Radio Station

Encinal teacher Kevin Gorham leads students through the launch of the radio station. (Action Alameda News)

Encinal teacher Kevin Gorham leads students through the launch of the radio station. (Action Alameda News)

An excited Encinal Junior and Senior High School student walked visitors from the main office to the studio this morning for the launch of Encinal Jets radio, now broadcasting weekdays from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. on 96.1 on the FM dial.

The station is part of the schools new Career Technical Education program in media and is the fruit of a partnership between the Alameda Unified School District and Alameda Community Radio; the Federal Communications Commission approved a low-power FM license for the station, which shares the frequency with Poor Magazine for Poor Radio.

Last month, Alameda Community Radio installed the transmitter and erected an antenna on top of the Masonic Temple in downtown Alameda, funded by grant from Alameda Rotary.

The transmitter has a radius of about 7 miles, perhaps further, when weather conditions are right, explained Encinal broadcast and communications teacher Kevin Gorham.

The station is not yet distributing programs via podcast and the Internet, to extend reach, Gorham said, but now that the station is launched, he can begin to explore those avenues.

Alameda Mayor Trish Spencer and school district superintendent Sean McPhetridge celebrated the opening with a ribbon cutting this morning.

In a prepared media statement, McPhetridge said, “”AUSD is very grateful for the community partnership and staff leadership that envisioned and built this new Career Technical Education pathway. It will not only benefit Encinal Junior and Senior High School but also the Alameda community writ large. We are excited that more AUSD students and the public will be having hands-on broadcast journalism and media engineering opportunities to prepare them for college and career while simultaneously improving media access to the local community.”

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