Working toward a quality education for all.

October 5, 2012

Washington, D.C.-Today, during the National Education Association’s board meeting, over 100 education representatives, took time to recognize the upcoming first ever International Day of the Girl by inviting Global Campaign for Education-US intern, Eliana Stanislawski, President of the Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School chapter of School Girls Unite, to speak.

After a statement of occasion by NEA President, Dennis Van Roekel and an introduction by Jeri Yamagata, Chair of the NEA Women’s Issues Committee, Miss Stanislawski, took the podium to share not only her education experience but also what can be done when people are empowered with information.

“I will be seventeen years old in four days,” said Stanislawski. “In the birth lottery, I drew the straw that landed me in a Montgomery County family, with access to one of the best public school systems in the nation. I’m standing before you today because I was blessed enough to have been invested in.”

Currently only 30 percent of girls are enrolled in secondary schools, worldwide, and it is estimated that by 2015, women will make up 64 percent of the world’s illiterate adult population. Of the 61 million children of primary age that are not enrolled in school, 53 percent are girls.

Eliana challenged everyone in the room through her words to act on this information.

“I’m lucky,” said Stanislawski. “I want every girl to be as lucky as I have been, and to have the opportunity to lead a safe, fulfilled life. I don’t think that’s a lot to ask. The empowerment of girls is not just a feminist agenda—it is vital to ensure economic stability and alleviate poverty.”

October 11 was declared International Day of the Girl by The United Nations. October 11, 2012, or 10.11.12, marks the first Day of the Girl and will be celebrated worldwide by several organizations and used as a day to highlight some of the unique issues girls face, internationally, that can keep them from their potential. 

For more information, please contact Global Campaign for Education-US at awilson@gce-us.org.

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The Global Campaign for Education, U.S. Chapter (GCE-US) is a broad-based coalition of U.S. organizations including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), teachers’ unions, foundations, faith-based groups, and think tanks dedicated to ensuring access to quality education for all.