I remember sitting down at my very first PTA meeting, excited for my daughter to enter kindergarten at a wonderful public school, until I heard these words:

It looks like we’ll have to cancel the dance program this year.

I felt the tears well up in my eyes.

As a former dancer myself, knowing there was a full-time dance
instructor on staff, as well as a visiting program with a notable
professional dance company, was one of the key reasons I was excited
about the school. With enough fundraising we knew we could bring them
back. But it wasn’t easy.

Every time I made a donation to the
school, or bought a Rice Krispy treat at a bake sale, or helped
coordinate a fundraiser, or even attempted face painting at the school
carnival (apologies to all those kids who paid for really ugly
butterflies on their cheeks), I kept telling myself, I’m doing this for dance.

both my girls now have weekly dance classes in the school, along with
art, drama, music, and library–activities I took for granted when I was
a kid but are fewer and further between in public schools these days.

In an age of financial cutbacks and increasingly less Federal commitment to our public schools over all, it’s our
commitment as parents to our kids’ educational environments that will
make the greatest impact on whether they have a great one.

That goes far beyond academics.
There’s so much research, that shows that getting girls involved in
sports, the arts, dance, chess, computers, or any other
achievement-oriented passion leads to higher self-esteem, more
confidence, better grades, better graduation rates, lower levels of
depression, and markedly decreased teen pregnancy rates
. It can’t all be about clothes and nails and boy bands.

I recently learned that 80% of Fortune 500 female execs played sports. And I I’m not entirely surprised.

Clorox Power a Bright Future $50,000 school grant

That’s why I am so happy to get to tell you about Clorox’s Power a Bright Future
initiative, which we’re delighted to have as a sponsor. They are giving
you the opportunity to nominate your school for funding, and be one of 7
schools to win a $50,000 grant for your school.

through 10/17 and tell them how you’d use a $50,000 grant from Clorox.
Sports? Dance? A community garden? An astronomy program? Band

I’d imagine the hardest part will be narrowing it down. –Liz

We are thrilled to be working with our sponsor Clorox and their Power a Bright Future $50,000 school grant program
to help you power a bright future for your school. We really hope you
enter now through 10/17. And if you are a finalist, let us know so we
can help promote you! Good luck!

[top image via; bottom image via clorox]

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