February 26, 2024
As if PCS season isn't stressful enough it can be overwhelming when you begin to navigate the requirements to register your children in their new schools. Join Faith and Lynda as they jump right into all things school related for your child as well as continuing education for yourself. They are joined by Michele Sumter. Michele is a military spouse who has served in military-connected schools as a principal at all levels. She enjoys sharing her knowledge of school systems and transitioning students with her military friends. The key to it all is it's never too early to start contacting schools to ensure your military child is set up for success. Download Takeaways - https://warroom.armywarcollege.edu/wp-content/uploads/22-055-OUR-EDUCATION-STORY-PT-1_SCHOOL-AND-PCS_Episode-Takeaways.pdf

As if PCS season isn’t stressful enough it can be overwhelming when you begin to navigate the requirements to register your children in their new schools. Join Faith and Lynda as they jump right into all things school related for your child as well as continuing education for yourself. They are joined by Michele Sumter. Michele is a military spouse who has served in military-connected schools as a principal at all levels. She enjoys sharing her knowledge of school systems and transitioning students with her military friends. The key to it all is it’s never too early to start contacting schools to ensure your military child is set up for success.

As military sisters and brothers, if you know about something, share it.

EPISODE TAKEAWAYS:

  1. If there is a question about zoning contact the School Superintendent’s office and they should connect you with Student Services to confirm your address.
  2. New online registration procedures often allow you to register all of your children at once. Look for something like the “Add Additional Children” button or box
  3. Digitize your PCS binder – scanning vital documents (birth certificates, physicals, shot records) keeps them close at hand and can expedite the complicated registration process for your child’s new school. If you don’t have a scanner, office and copy centers often offer scanning services for a modest fee.
  4. Go to your new state’s Department of Education of website. You will find demographic, certification, test scores and zoning information along with so much more. Start here to find your state’s site.
  5. Another great resource is the Military Interstate Children’s Compact Commission. The website has information for the school liaison officers, transferring classes to other states for high schoolers, checklists, and a host of information.
  6. High school parents – determine how many credits are necessary for graduation, this will drive your child’s workload and game plan. Send an unofficial transcript as soon as possible for evaluation by a student counselor.
  7. Sports and clubs – the sooner you can get info on summer programs, election dates and availability for military dependents the better the chance your child will have to participate.
  8. Middle school parents – high school accredited, advanced placement and magnet programs often have testing windows for entry. Determine when they occur and see if there is any way to accomplish remotely or perhaps even adjust arrival dates when possible.
  9. The education center is the first stop for any spouse looking to further their own education. There are scores of programs, accreditations, and schools that are available and many of them are free or reduced cost. It’s also the best place to go to understand G.I Bill transfers, balances and usage by spouses and children of service members.
  10. Premium LinkedIn packages for military spouses can be obtained by going to Military OneSource and getting a free account. Once there search for LinkedIn for instructions on getting a free Premium upgrade. Also search for Spouse Education and Career Opportunities  (SECO) and Military Spouse Employment Partnership (MSEP) for an incredible repository of information and resources.
  11. Even more information supporting military families can be found at your local:

Michele Sumter is married to Colonel Shawn Sumter and they have three children. Through her own consulting company, she currently coaches new school principals across the country. She has served in military-connected schools as a principal at all levels, a director of student services, and a community college director over the last 20 years.

Faith Bomar is not as funny as she thinks she is, according to her loving Army officer husband of nineteen years. She is the mother of four children only because it seemed like a good idea at the time and as a result of this, she has changed dirty diapers from CA to PA and on three different continents. When avoiding cooking dinner she spends her time working outside of the home as a Doula and giving her time away to the community as a perpetually unprofessional volunteer.

Lynda Lind has spent the last 15 years as a Navy wife and devoted volunteer. She is a stay-at-home mother of 2 with the survival skills needed for 7 moves and multiple deployments. She likes to spend her free time cooking and sewing, and has loved this year learning more about how the Army does things.

The views expressed in this presentation are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army War College, U.S. Army, or Department of Defense.

Photo Credit: Photo by woodleywonderworks via Wikimedia Commons

Other releases in the “Mil Spouse Edition”:

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