Whether your children have already returned to school or you’re eagerly awaiting a start date, there are many resources available for military families navigating the challenges of K-12 education.
As a parent of two military children, I understand how frequent moves exacerbate these challenges. Our children, resilient as they are, may need additional support and there are amazing organizations out there to help.
1. Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC). From its Back to School toolkit to military student consultants, MCEC provides a number of resources to support your military-connected student. This organization offers training for students, parents, and education professionals, along with SchoolQuest, an interactive tool designed to support military students in sixth through 12th grade. Throughout the year, MCEC offers webinars (recordings are available, too) to ease transitions for students and their parents.
2. Partners in PROMISE. Military families who have children with special needs require additional support to ensure their students receive the services, such as individualized education plans (IEP) and 504 plans, they are entitled to. Partners in PROMISE helps elevate the voices of military families and offers an impressive library of resources for special needs families. The organization also provides support for families who experience difficulty ensuring their children receive services following a PCS move.
3. Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). Many military families opt for homeschooling to provide continuity and stability for their children. HSLDA connects military families with a wide range of resources to support homeschooling, including information on scholarships, legal requirements by state, international legal support, and curriculum discounts for military families.
4. Our Military Kids. Our Military Kids have provided over $30 million in grants since 2004 to families of deployed National Guard or Reserve members and combat-injured servicemembers. These grants provide military children with opportunities to participate in sports, fine arts, camps, and tutoring programs to nurture and sustain children while their military parent is away or recovering from injury.
5. Tutor.com. Funded by the Department of Defense MWR General Library Program and Coast Guard Mutual Assistance, Tutor.com provides access to free, online tutoring and homework help, 24/7. This resource has expert tutors in over 150 different subjects, including bilingual Spanish offerings in math, science, social studies, writing, study skills, and parent coaching.
Take advantage of these great resources to provide support for your military student, and don’t forget to use your military school liaison officer for district-specific questions and concerns. The School Liaison Program was designed to build a support network to provide the best possible education experience for military-connected students worldwide. You can find your school liaison officer at this link.
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