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DEFENSE COMMUNITIES 360

Military Children Need the Nation’s Support, DOD Official Says

  • March 24, 2011
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Military children face many challenges, starting with the need to cope with extended absences when a parent is deployed overseas, Robert Gordon III, deputy assistant secretary of defense for military community and family policy, said during a Washington, D.C., education summit this week.

Gordon highlighted the efforts of Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and his wife, Deborah, to bring attention to the plight of military children, and mentioned several initiatives now under way to support them, reported the American Forces Press Service.

A 270-day educational review launched by the Pentagon to ensure all 1.2 million military children have outstanding educational opportunities will look at curriculums, the impact of transitions and deployments, and facilities. Gordon also touched on the military family life consultant program, a way for service members to receive information on support services and non-medical counseling.

During the same roundtable discussion, Deborah Mullen, underscored the psychological burden borne by military kids, the American Forces Press Service reported. Military children face higher levels of emotional difficulties, with older children exhibiting more problems at school, and younger kids experiencing more stress and anxiety, according to a Rand Corp. study.

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