Responding to the Needs of Military Students and Military-connected Schools: Perceptions and Actions of School Administrators

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Military children experience a variety of military-specific stressors. Stressors include repeated geographic relocation and parental separation, both of which can negatively affect social, emotional, psychological, and academic outcomes. Educational reform research, however, has found that caring and responsive schools can moderate the effects of psychological stress on the social and emotional outcomes of students. Lacking are studies that examine the transformative role of principals and other school administrators in providing school supports for military children. Hence, this study is guided by multiple objectives. This study examined the military-connected (MC) school administrators' philosophy as it relates to military students, programmatic efforts for military students, and assessment of military social work interns. Data were collected using an online survey tool, and results suggest consensus among most MC school administrators regarding the unique needs of military students and the need for programs and resources that address these needs. This study found that many administrators struggle to provide adequate supports for military students.


This article was originally published in Children & Schools, volume 36, issue 1, in 2014.

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Oxford University Press