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McDONALD'S AND YOUNG ASTRONAUT COUNCIL ANNOUNCE INTERNATIONAL SPACE YEAR EDUCATION INITIATIVE AT THE WHITE HOUSE

McDONALD'S AND YOUNG ASTRONAUT COUNCIL ANNOUNCE INTERNATIONAL SPACE YEAR
 EDUCATION INITIATIVE AT THE WHITE HOUSE
 WASHINGTON, Jan. 24 /PRNewswire/ -- McDonald's and the Young Astronaut Council announced a unique educational partnership in a special White House ceremony today with President George Bush. To celebrate International Space Year (ISY) 1992, a special educational program entitled "Exploration and Discovery," made possible by a grant from Ronald McDonald Children's Charities, will be distributed this week to every elementary, middle and junior high school in the United States.
 "Exploration and Discovery," designed to boost students' achievement in mathematics and science, also features a Space Bill of Rights contest -- with astronaut visits awarded to the top ten winning schools.
 At the White House ceremony, Young Astronaut student members presented President Bush with original artwork from the cover of "Exploration and Discovery" created by space artist Bob McCall.
 "Exploration and Discovery" targets students in kindergarten through grade nine, promoting the study of science and math by using space and the environment as subjects. Through active science experiments, mathematical games and critical-thinking exercises, "Exploration and Discovery" helps equip American students with skills they will need to cope in an increasingly technical world.
 "With budget reductions affecting many school systems across the United States, we're pleased that McDonald's and Ronald McDonald Children's Charities can provide a program that gives teachers creative, yet inexpensive, ways to help students excel in math and science," said Stephanie Skurdy, director of education, McDonald's Corporation.
 A major element of "Exploration and Discovery" is a national school contest -- outlined in the curriculum package -- which challenges students to create a set of governing regulations, similar to the United States' Bill of Rights, for a society in space. McDonald's will award in-person astronaut visits to each of the top ten winning schools. Other contest prizes include: plaques, merit certificates and letters of commendation. Entries must be received by midnight, April 1; winners will be announced by April 15.
 "The Young Astronaut Council is grateful to RMCC and McDonald's for their leadership roles in support of math and science education in America," said Young Astronaut Council President T. Wendell Butler. "This partnership will provide the opportunity for children all across the nation to participate in hands-on math and science activities, and to learn more about their environment."
 The Young Astronaut Council, a non-profit organization, was established by the White House in 1984 to help raise American students' proficiency in math and science. The Council is the world's largest space-related educational organization, developing and distributing curriculum materials to member chapters in elementary and middle schools. More than 26,500 chapters with more than 650,000 members belong to the Council's worldwide network.
 Since its inception in 1984, Ronald McDonald Children's Charities has awarded in excess of $50 million to more than 1,250 organizations serving children. Established in memory of McDonald's Corporation founder Ray A. Kroc, Ronald McDonald Children's Charities helps young people lead healthier, happier and more productive lives by funding programs in the areas of health care and medical research, including Ronald McDonald House; education and the arts; and social and civic concerns.
 McDonald's is the world's leading quick-service restaurant organization with more than 12,000 restaurants in 59 countries around the world, including more than 8,700 in the United States. Over 75 percent of McDonald's restaurant businesses are locally owned and operated by independent entrepreneurs.
 -0- 1/24/92
 /CONTACT: Bridget Marshall of McDonald's, 708-575-6263; Paul Burke of Young Astronaut Council, 202-682-1984; or Libby FitzGibbons of Golin/Harris Communications, 312-836-7130, for McDonald's/ CO: McDonald's Corporation ST: Illinois IN: LEI SU: SH -- NY063 -- 3367 01/24/92 14:31 EST
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Jan 24, 1992
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