Jets Radio Goes Live

Eric Fonstein Above, technicians install an antenna and transmitter on the roof of the Masonic Temple on Alameda Avenue. The project, funded with a grant from Alameda Rotary, allows the broadcast of a new radio station in town managed by Encinal Junior and Senior High School Students.

 

A new radio station — KJTZ FM-LP at 96.1 on your dial — began broadcasting at 7 a.m., Monday, March 6. Managed by Encinal Junior and Senior High School students, the station is part of a new career technical education program in media. Students in the program’s radio broadcast journalism class will broadcast news, interviews, music and Central Avenue traffic reports each weekday morning from 7 to 11 a.m.

The launch of the radio station marks the final step in a long journey that Alameda Unified School District (AUSD) began six years ago. At that time, the district partnered with Alameda Community Radio (ACR) and Poor Magazine to apply for FCC licenses to jointly use the 96.1 FM frequency.

Under the agreement, AUSD is providing the studios and ACR the transmitter and antenna, which was recently installed on the roof of the Masonic Temple on Alameda Avenue. A grant from Alameda Rotary helped finance the transmitter and antenna. 

“AUSD is very grateful for the community partnership and staff leadership that envisioned and built this new Career Technical Education pathway,” said AUSD Superintendent Dr. Sean McPhetridge “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 careers while improving media access to the local community.”

The students are broadcasting from state-of-the-art studios, funded with career technical education grants. “The students are raring to go,” said Encinal High teacher Kevin Gorham, a radio broadcast veteran with a 20-year career in the industry who oversees the program. “They’ve learned how to use the technology and how to develop programming. The next step is going live.”

ACR will use the studios to operate KACR-LP (also at 96.1 FM) when the students are not on the air. 

“ACR is proud of its partnership with AUSD and is excited to be bringing local radio back to Alameda. And we’re excited to invite Alameda residents to get involved with this new station,” said Peter Franck, who chairs the ACR’s board of directors.

 

Felicia Vargas Students in the studio at Encinal High School prepare for the first day of broadcasting the school’s brand-new radio station.