There are approximately 1.5 million children and youth today in US public schools whose parents are in the military. A high degree of mobility is demanded of these children and of their parents. Complicating relocation is the reality that significant numbers of these young people are separated from at least one parent due to overseas deployment. While these circumstances are unique, there are other populations of vulnerable and mobile youth whose lives are complicated by analogous factors.
There has been a generation of research that has identified the highly protective role schools can play in moderating the academic, social and health behavior risks of youth. Johns Hopkins University researchers have been studying school climate, academic expectations, student connectedness and school, family and community partnerships for more than 20 years. We have worked in school-based violence prevention, pregnancy prevention and drug use prevention.
The Military Child Initiative is based on the empirical research evidence of what works for these populations of young people. Our goal is to move research-based practical approaches into schools and school districts so that all children and youth can thrive, especially those who are most socially mobile and emotionally vulnerable.
Please visit the following website for information on the longitudinal study of deployment and military familes, http://sites.google.com/site/militaryfamiliesdeployment/