Children in Military Families
In Focus: Children in Military Families
- Nearly 44% of active duty military members, and 43% of Reserve members, have children—an average of two children per military family. There are currently 1.2 million children of active duty military members worldwide.
- Approximately 2 million children in military families have experienced a parent’s deployment since 2001. During that time, 41,000 children have experienced a deployed service member parent being killed, wounded, injured, or seriously ill.
- Military family moves may provide both positive and negative experiences for children, including increased family cohesiveness and resilience as well as stress and loneliness.
Key Strategies for Inclusion
- Initiate contact. Identify military-connected children in the school and initiate contact with their families.
- Support successful transitions. Develop strategies to help military families move through key transition issues. Be flexible with meetings and events to accommodate military schedules.
- Facilitate educational continuity. Facilitate continuity in educational progress, records and placement by talking with children, parents, teachers and school administrators.
- Recognize sensitive issues. Provide guidelines for families and teachers to discuss issues related to military action.
- Advocate for military children and families. Consult the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children.
- National PTA Military Alliance for Parents and Partners (MAPP) is a group of organizations that work together to provide resources to and advocate for military-connected families. MAPP partners include the following:
- Association of the United States Army (AUSA)
- S. Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA)
- Military Children Education Coalition (MCEC)
- Military Impacted Schools Association (MISA)
- National Military Family Association (NMFA)
- Using the PTA National Standards for Family-School Partnerships to Support Military Families: 15 ways PTAs can support military families
- PTA Resolution: Educational Opportunity for Military Children
- Organizational Resources for Military Families: Lists organizations that support military families
- The Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children has been adopted by 45 states to provide for the uniform treatment of military children transferring between school districts and states.
- Military Child Education Coalition is focused on ensuring quality educational opportunities for all military children affected by mobility, family separation and transition.
- Other organizational resources include: Association of the United States Army, Blue Star Families, Congressional Military Family Caucus, Department of Defense Education Activity, DoD Military Family Readiness Council, Military OneSource, Military Spouse, National Military Family Association, Military Impacted Schools Association, and com for U.S. Military Families (free tutoring program).
 Clever, M., & Segal, D. (2013). The demographics of military children and families. Future of Children 23(2), 13–39.
 U.S. Department of Defense. (2010). Report on the impact of deployment of members of the Armed Forces on their dependent children. Washington, DC: DoD. Retrieved from http://download.militaryonesource.mil/12038/MOS/Reports/Report-to-Congress-on-Impact-of-Deployment-on-Military-Children.pdf
 Weber, E. G., & Weber, D. K. (2005). Geographic relocation frequency, resilience, and military adolescent behavior. Military Medicine, 170(7), 638–642; Kelley, M. L., Finkel, L. B., & Ashby, J. (2009). Geographic mobility, family, and maternal variables associated with psychosocial adjustment of military children. Military Medicine, 168, 1019–1024; Marchant, K. H., & Medway, F. J. (2007). Adjustment and achievement associated with mobility in military families. Psychology in the Schools, 24, 289–294; all cited in Clever & Segal, op. cit.