One of the biggest challenges military families face is ensuring the children get a solid education despite frequent moves, which require them to shift between schools that may have very different curricula and educational styles.Unsurprisingly, then, some families prefer the relative stability afforded by homeschooling. As its popularity has grown, the military has become more supportive, in some cases providing course materials and workspaces for homeschooled students. The New York Times reports:
At Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia, the library has special presentations for home-schoolers on Benjamin Franklin and static electricity. Fort Bragg offers daytime taekwondo classes. At Fort Belvoir, Va., there are athletic events and a parent-led chemistry lab.At Andrews Air Force Base about 15 miles outside Washington, more than 40 families participate on Wednesdays in a home schooling cooperative at the base’s youth center. This month, teenagers in one room warmed up for a mock audition, while younger children downstairs learned to sign words like “play” and searched for “Special Agent Stan” during a math game. Military mothers taught each class.
This is a smart approach. In our view, no single form of schooling is best for all students. Policy should be geared toward the creation of an ecosystem of options so that parents can choose one tailored to their children’s needs. Homeschooling should definitely be part of that mix, and military children are particularly good candidates for this approach.[Homeschooling photo courtesy of Shutterstock]