An initiative launched last week by first lady Michelle Obama and the vice president’s wife, Jill Biden, is designed to better prepare educators instructing military-connected children. Operation: Educate the Educator already has a commitment from more than 100 colleges offering teaching degrees.
The Obama administration has partnered with the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the Military Child Education Coalition to help military children as they face social, emotional, and learning challenges in the classroom while having an active-duty parent.
The colleges that have signed on have agreed to incorporate information about military children in the training curricula for student-teachers, push faculty members and student-teachers to do research on military children, and require student-teachers to work with military children as part of their final clinical experiences or internships.
Nearly 2 million students have parents who are on active duty, members of the National Guard or Reserves, or military veterans, according to the Military Child Education Coalition. Such students often move six to nine times during their preschool through high school education. More than 80 percent of the 1.1 million-plus K-12 students attend public schools.
A version of this article appeared in the October 10, 2012 edition of Education Week as Military Children to Be Teacher-Training Topic