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Every Child in Focus—Military Child

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In April, National PTA’s Every Child in Focus campaign centers on the military child. Using the PTA National Standard for Family-School Partnerships, we will explore ways PTAs can welcome and support the families of military children in the school community.

We have created information and resources on the unique challenges military children face and ways PTAs can better support military families in achieving student success.

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How Your PTA Can Better Support Military Children

  • Read our PTA One Voice Blog for PTA success stories and additional resources. You can also share your blog! We want to hear local and state PTA success stories on supporting children with special needs and how you promote an environment that is welcoming to all children and parents. Use our blog share tool to tell us your story.
  • Share the Parents' Guides to Student Success. These standards provide clear, consistent expectations for what students should be learning at each grade level in order to be prepared for college and career.

About Military Children and Families

  • Approximately 2 million military children have experienced a parental deployment since 2001.
  • There are currently 1.2 million military children of active duty members worldwide.
  • Nearly 80% of military children attend public schools throughout the United States.
  • The average military family moves three times more often than their civilian counterpart.
  • The repeated and extended separations and increased hazards of deployment compound stressors in military children's lives.
  • One-third of school-age military children show psychosocial behaviors such as being anxious, worrying often, crying more frequently.
  • The U.S. military consists of approximately 1.4 million active duty service members and 810,000 National Guard and Selected Reserve. Active duty military families live on or near military installations worldwide. National Guard and Reserve families might never live near a military installation and look within their community for educational services, friendship and support.
  • A positive school environment, built upon caring relationships among all participants—students, teachers, staff, administrators, parents and community members—has been shown to impact not only academic performance but also positively influence emotions and behaviors of students.
  • Supporting the military child takes a school-wide effort.  School staff should also be educated on the academic and social-emotional challenges military children face.

(Sources: Best Practices:Building Blocks for Enhancing School Environment, The Psychosocial Effects of Deployment on Military Children)

Ways to Engage Military Families

PTA Military Alliance for Parents and Parents

Visit the Military Families, Near and Far

Downloadable parent and student resources 

About Every Child in Focus

National PTA’s Every Child in Focus is a campaign centered on strengthening family engagement in schools by celebrating important cultural distinctions and achievements, while highlighting solutions to potential educational issues. 

Each month, National PTA will spotlight the educational issues surrounding a particular group, highlight their accomplishments and focus on ways to foster Family-School Partnerships. Follow our Every Child in Focus Calendar for materials to help families and PTAs learn more about each group.