November is Military Family Month, and Governor Tony Evers issued a proclamation honoring the daily sacrifices, selfless contributions, and exceptional patriotism of military families across the state of Wisconsin.
Wisconsin hosts approximately 10,000 citizen soldiers and airmen, over half of whom have a spouse with them, and a third of whom have children. Active military family members make enormous sacrifices to support their service member. It’s estimated that military children change schools nine times between kindergarten and high school graduation. All the more reason our public schools need to support and address the unique needs of miliary families.
We asked superintendents of lead military-impacted school districts how they are supporting military families.
Tomah Area School District
Dr. Charles M. (Mike) Hanson II, Ed.D. Superintendent, Tomah Area School District
Tomah Area School District supports military families and students associated with Fort McCoy — both active duty Guard and Reserve members.
“We are proud to serve military connected families throughout the school year," Dr. Hanson said. "Our collaborative partnership with Ft. McCoy Garrison command staff and School Liaison Officer creates strong opportunities for Tomah Area School District educators to deliver high quality educational services that meet the unique needs of military children and their families.
"During the school year, you'll find service members and their families visiting with students in classrooms about their military experiences stateside and overseas, taking part in building level celebrations of service, and presenting to the board of education. Our school district website as well as weekly and monthly publications highlight these and many other activities and services dedicated to the military family.”
Among the resources the district provides:
- Regular communication with military families through the school district Facebook page, where they feature weekly resource posts specifically for these families
- Military-Connected Family web page
- News Section of the district website
Sun Prairie Area School District
Dr. Bradford G. Saron, Ed.D., Superintendent, Sun Prairie Area Schools
Sun Prairie Area School district serves families of many members of the Air and Army National Guard, located near Truax Field, and the Department of Military Affairs Headquarters in Madison.
“The Sun Prairie Area School District recognizes the service and sacrifices it takes for our military families to support our Nation, and we are honored to support our military families (both staff and residents),” Saron said.
Their Board resolution from this past April’s Month of the Military Child reiterates the District’s support: “…the physical, social, and emotional well-being of children in military families is essential to their success and has a direct impact on the resiliency of military families serving our country.” The district also has a wonderful webpage full of resources, spanning school and student supports, IDEA and Special Education needs, as well as local, state, and national resources.
This item was facilitated by Shelley Joan Weiss, Wisconsin Commissioner for the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunities for Military Children MIC3.