CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Local military representatives and the West Virginia Department of Education signed a Memorandum of Understanding as a part of the Common Ground: Education and Military Partnership.
Representatives from the Marines, Army, West Virginia National Guard, Air Force, Navy, West Virginia Wing Civil Air Patrol, West Virginia Congress of Parents and Teachers, Inc., Operation: Military Kids, the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education took part in the celebration on Monday.
In April, the West Virginia Board of Education approved the Common Ground: Education and Military Partnership agreement. The agreement has two focuses: to promote mentoring, training and scholarship opportunities to all students; and create networks of people, organizations and other resources to help support military children.
Benefits of the Common Ground include providing career information resources to schools in West Virginia, career counseling, tutoring and career mentors to inspire, advise and enlighten students.
“The educational resources provided by military branches should be made available to all of our students,” said West Virginia Board of Education President Priscilla Haden. “I am so glad we have local members of the military who are willing to take part in this agreement.”
The Common Ground Partnership will increase the capacity of our districts and schools to support and engage students who may otherwise drop out of high school; help students attain 21st century skills; and ensure that communities have a productive, civically active, well-educated workforce.
“Both the West Virginia Department of Education and the military are dedicated to ensuring that every student has the resources necessary to graduate from high school and be career ready upon graduation,” said state Superintendent Jorea Marple. “Every student, whether interested in joining the military or not, can take advantage of the resources the military provides.”
The partnership agreement follows the launch of the national initiative, federal Joining Forces program. The White House announced the initiative in April encouraging Americans to do more for military families.
First lady Joanne Tomblin announced the launch of her new military service initiative, “Serve West Virginia Military: Serving Those Who Serve Us,” in May. The launch is in conjunction with the federal Joining forces program.
Current members of the Common Ground Partnership include recruiting services from all military branches in West Virginia, The West Virginia Wing Civil Air Patrol, Operation Military Kids, West Virginia Congress of Parents and Teachers, Inc., the State Board of Education and the State Department of Education.
A photo slideshow from the event is available at http://static.k12.wv.us/ss/2011/common-ground/ and a video is available at http://wvde.state.wv.us/player.php?m=f&vid=2011/common-ground.
For more information, contact the Office of Communications at 304-558-2699.
--The West Virginia Board of Education and the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) are committed to ensuring all students in the state are college and career ready when they graduate from a public school. What West Virginia students are learning in school exceeds national and international standards. Through the WVDE’s 21st century learning plan called “Global21: Students deserve it. The world demands it.,” West Virginia is seeing better student performance on the West Virginia Educational Standards Test 2 (WESTEST2); the SAT and the ACT college entrance exams; the job skills assessment called Work Keys given to career and technical education students; and in a high school graduation rate that exceeds the national average.