Less than ten percent of the 1.2 million children of service members attend Department of Defense schools. They play sports, join clubs, and attend school in your neighborhood. Also, there are more than 700,000 National Guard and Reserve kids who might never live on or near a military installation. Because military families often live far from extended relatives, they look within their community for friendship and support, especially during long deployments, so it’s a good idea to know who they are. Of course, military kids are like any other kids—they don’t know that much about what mom or dad does for work. Here are a few ways to get to know your military neighbors, without using a spotlight:
Military Impacted Schools Association (MISA) is a national organization of school superintendents that works on funding (Impact Aid), legislation, partnerships and programs for military families on the move. Visit www.militarystudent.org for more information.
Military Brats and Other Global Nomads: Growing Up in Organization Families by Morten Ender, sociology professor at West Point Military Academy is a collection of research about military families with perspectives from adults who grew up in the Service.