Recognizing that investing in education means investing in the future of our city and our country, companies from across the nation are using their resources to support the Task Force's work. These corporate trailblazers and their philanthropic organizations include:
Macy's is the Task Force's lead corporate partner in its efforts to reduce chronic absenteeism and improve educational outcomes for at-risk New York City students. Macy's generously donated thousands of dollars of gift cards used to support attendance incentive strategies at Task Force pilot schools. In addition, Macy's has contributed directly to the Task Force, supporting a wide range of initiatives to improve student success, and funding innovative research on truancy and chronic absenteeism by leading experts in the field. In doing so, Macy's is not only promoting good attendance today, but helping to put innovative systems in place that will give students the tools they need to graduate and succeed throughout their lives.
Office Depot Foundation
The Office Depot Foundation is dedicated to making sure that students across the country have the supplies they need to excel in school. Through its National Backpack Program, the Foundation has outfitted more than one million low-income young people with backpacks. This year, Office Depot used the program as an incentive to boost attendance rates at targeted elementary schools in New York City by providing free backpacks to every student who attended the first day.
See Photos from the Press Conference
Starbucks is well known for its commitment to giving back to the community—and the Task Force is delighted that the company has chosen to support its work to combat truancy and absenteeism in New York City schools. By providing gift cards and products to encourage families and volunteers to make attendance a priority, Starbucks is rewarding success and motivating New Yorkers to take an active role in efforts to get students to attend school every day.
Old Navy has long been devoted to social responsibility, so the Task Force is thrilled to count the company as a partner in its efforts to boost attendance in public schools. Through its Attendance Challenge, Old Navy rewarded students at select elementary schools with the best and most improved attendance in the beginning of the 2010-11 school year with $50 gift certificates, VIP shopping sprees, and special winter gifts—great incentives to go to school every day. Just as exciting, the company has committed to a similar challenge for the entire 2010-11 school year. Top-performing schools at the elementary, middle and high school levels will each receive a $5,000 donation, and students from those schools will receive similar gifts as were awarded at the beginning of the year.
See the Flier Announcing the Old Navy "Attendance Challenge"
Viacom, BET TV, HOT 97 and Kiss FM
These media partners have worked in collaboration with the national nonprofit Get Schooled to help the Task Force launch WakeUp! NYC and provided invaluable support in developing and amplifying the messaging to New York City students.
The Yankees Attendance Hall of Fame
The Bronx Bombers have always inspired and supported New York City students. This year, the team brings this commitment to a whole new level, with the launch of the Yankees Attendance Hall of Fame. Students from across the five boroughs will be recognized for meeting the Mayor's challenge of getting to school and succeeding every single day. These students received free tickets to the June 15th home game against the Texas Rangers, and a number of them participated in an on-field appearance before the game with Schools Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott. Three Yankees - Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes and Mark Teixeira - also recorded inspirational messages as part of the Wake Up NYC program.
Target is committed to improving public education and helping young people thrive. In partnership with the Kids in Need Foundation, the company helped more than 100 students living in temporary housing get the tools they need to do well in school by providing school supply kits to parents who attended the Parent Summit hosted by the Departments of Homeless Services and Education. Target's generosity will ensure that vulnerable young people are prepared for success, giving them the motivation they need to go to school every day.
Bloomberg LP is dedicated to improving the lives of students by ensuring that they have the tools they need to succeed in school. To help achieve this goal, the company partnered with the Task Force to provide hundreds of backpacks with school supplies for children living in temporary housing at the beginning of the school year. In doing so, the company helped get young people excited for the new school year while ensuring they had the equipment necessary to succeed.
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