Last Tuesday, third-grader Tania couldn’t stop smiling — or dancing or building or engineering. That’s because it was the day of the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD)’s first city-wide Bring Your Dad to Afterschool celebration — and The Child Center’s COMPASS afterschool program at P.S. 89 in Elmhurst, where Tania is a daily participant, was selected by DYCD as a model site to implement the event.
It was the first time Tania got to show her dad what afterschool, where she spends 15 hours a week, is really like. “I was happy my Papi was with me because I love him so much,” Tania said. “We danced and made a little robot car.”
For years, schools across New York State have participated in the national Dads Take Your Children to School Day, but as children like Tania can tell you, afterschool is as much a part of their daily life as the regular school day is. It’s where children receive quality homework help, build friendships, interact with relatable role models, and engage in enrichment activities (like STEM or performing arts) that encourage their strengths.