Ed. note: This is cross-posted on the White House Blog. See the original post here.
Each fourth Thursday of April, millions of children across the country participate in Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day. At the White House, we usually celebrate this day by inviting children of employees to join their parents at work for a series of educational activities. The long hours that often accompany being a White House employee can be very demanding on a family, so we like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to the children of our staff for sharing their parents with us.
This year, the Office of Management and Administration is working with the White House Council on Women and Girls and My Brother’s Keeper Initiative to expand our event to provide work-based learning opportunities for youth from the local Washington, D.C., area. In collaboration with the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Washington and the D.C. Child and Family Services Agency, we’re inviting youth who are typically unable to participate in this day – including foster youth and youth who may be at higher risk of dropping out of school, or may not have a parent with a job that allows them to bring their children to work.
We’re also encouraging other employers to expand their Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day programs. Since 1993 when the Ms. Foundation for Women established Take Our Daughters to Work Day, and later expanded the event to include boys in 2003, the goal of this effort has always been to help all of our nation’s daughters and sons to achieve brighter futures.
Work-based learning experiences help young people to better understand the connection between what they learn in the classroom and future careers. In a national survey of youth who dropped out of high school, approximately four out of five respondents said that opportunities for real-world learning would have improved their chances of graduating. Consistent with these findings, the Departments of Education and Labor issued over $100 million in Youth CareerConnect Awards last year to re-design high schools to provide students with more work-based learning opportunities, such as internships and job shadowing.
If you're interested in expanding your Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day program, please consider contacting your local school system, non-profits, and other social service organizations to help identify youth participants in your community, then share your plans with us using this webform.