DoDEA Begins School Year 2013-2014
ALEXANDRIA, VA — August 28, 2013 — Nearly 83,000 students are beginning the 2013-2014 School Year in Department of the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) schools around the world.
DoDEA schools educate children of our Nation’s Servicemembers and the civilians who support them in twelve nations, seven states and two territories. Through the Educational Partnership Branch, DoDEA provides support to more than one million military-connected students who attend public schools throughout the United States.
DoDEA operates 191 schools in the United States, Europe and the Pacific through a worldwide network of 14 school districts and approximately 16,000 employees. In the United States, DoDEA schools operate under the Domestic Dependents Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS) system. In Europe and the Pacific, DoDEA schools are organized under the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS). The DoDEA Virtual High School (DVHS) serves DoDEA-eligible students, whether they are enrolled full-time at DVHS or are supplementing their other DoDEA coursework.
All DoDEA schools are accredited by AdvancED® http://www.advanc-ed.org/.
DoDEA in the United States:
DoDEA-Americas (DDESS) with headquarters in Peachtree City, Ga., is composed of 6 districts, with 65 schools in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam and Cuba. While the schools in Guam are officially DDESS entities, they are managed on a daily basis by DoDEA Pacific.
DoDEA in Europe:
DoDEA Europe (DoDDS-Europe), headquartered in Wiesbaden, Germany, operates 75 schools in Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Turkey, Bahrain and England.
DoDEA in the Pacific:
DoDEA Pacific (DoDDS-Pacific), headquartered in Okinawa, Japan, operates 50 schools in Japan and South Korea.
Current enrollment for each school, district, and area can be found at: http://www.dodea.edu/datacenter/enrollment_display.cfm.
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Ms. Marilee Fitzgerald is the DoDEA Director. Fitzgerald has oversight of all DoDEA schools, in the U.S. and overseas, to include the DVHS. In October, Ms. Fitzgerald will be retiring from her current position after more than 40 years’ service to the Federal Government and military families.
Principal Deputy Director
Mr. Adrian B. Talley is DoDEA’s Principal Deputy Director and Associate Director for Education. Mr. Talley directs DoDEA’s instructional and educational programs worldwide. He also oversees personnel operations involving more than 16,000 DoDEA employees who support military families overseas and in the United States and its territories. He will become the Acting DoDEA Director until a new director is selected.
Associate Director for Financial and Business Operations (FBO)
Mr. Robert M. Brady became DoDEA’s Associate Director for Financial and Business Operations in June. He is responsible for financial management of a DoDEA annual operating budget of approximately $1.7 billion and a multi-billion dollar Military Construction budget for numerous new schools in the next five years. The DoDEA budget supports 191 schools, nearly 83,000 students and over 16,000 employees worldwide. At DoDEA Headquarters, he is responsible for the Resource Management, Procurement, Logistics and Information Management Technology Divisions.
Area Director for DoDEA Americas Schools
Dr. Elizabeth Middlemiss was appointed in September 2012 and currently serves as the Acting Senior Leader for DoDEA Americas Schools.
Area Director for DoDEA Europe Schools
Dr. Nancy Bresell is the Area Director for DoDEA Schools in Europe. She was assigned as the Area Director in July 2009.
Area Director for DoDEA Pacific Schools
Dr. Linda Curtis was recently selected to become the Area Director for DoDEA Schools in the Pacific. She will assume her new duties in September.
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School Year 2013-2014 Calendars
DoDEA schools begin School Year 2013-2014 on different dates in each area. School breaks vary in each area as well. School calendars can be viewed at: http://www.dodea.edu/home/calendars.cfm.
Commitment to Education
A rigorous curriculum and high academic standards are the foundation for a student body that is academically and socially prepared and positioned for success in life. DoDEA students, pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, have a world of academic opportunities available to them. DoDEA schools are consistently ranked in the top ten states for student performance on nationwide assessments such as the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). African American and Hispanic students in DoDEA continue to score higher when compared with their stateside counterparts.
DoDEA students' performance reflects the emphasis and delivery of increased academic rigor and a challenging curriculum despite the unique circumstances the system faces every year through transition, deployments, and an annual 1/3 student population turnover.
On average, DoDEA students score at or above the 63rd median national percentile in core subjects on the standardized, norm-referenced TerraNova Multiple Assessments. The sum of scholarships, financial aid, and grants offered to DoDEA seniors in 2013 was $46.9 million.
Community Strategic Plan School Years 2013/2014 - 2017/2018
To advance DoDEA to new levels of excellence, DoDEA, along with students, parents, military leaders and other stakeholders, engaged in a comprehensive process to revise the Community Strategic Plan (CSP) for School Years 2013/2014 – 2017/2018. This plan will be implemented in School Year 2013-2014 and will guide our near-term imperatives and our long-term opportunities. DoDEA’s mission is to “Educate, Engage, and Empower Each student to succeed in a dynamic world.” The CSP outlines five goals aimed at achieving that mission: Student Excellence, School Excellence, Talent Excellence, Organizational Excellence and Outreach Excellence. The plan expands opportunities for all military-connected children, and sets a common understanding of our shared mission, vision, core values, and strategic goals.
DoDEA will annually review the CSP’s goals and initiatives to ensure students are continually provided a high-quality education. Strategic adjustments based on data and performance will be made to produce the best outcome for students.
To learn more about the CSP, visit the DoDEA website at: http://www.dodea.edu/CSP/index.cfm.
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Common Core State Standards Adopted
DoDEA joined 46 states, two territories, and the District of Columbia in adopting the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) into its curriculum, instruction, and assessment programs. All participants in the CCSS Initiative are working together to implement high quality standards in English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science for Kindergarten through 12th grade. These curriculum areas are research-based, rigorous, relevant to the real world, and reflect the knowledge and skills America's students need for success in college and careers.
In School Year 2013-2014, DoDEA will take the following steps in the process to adopt the CCSS:
- Conduct a thorough and comprehensive review of DoDEA standards and comparing them to the CCSS to identify gaps between DoDEA’s current standards and the CCSS and align DoDEA’s standards with the CCSS.
- Organize funding necessary to support the processes and resources required to adopt the CCSS.
- Review and choose assessment tools.
Teachers, administrators, parents, and military commanders will play key roles in this process. Adopting the CCSS will benefit DoDEA's highly mobile student population which moves frequently between public schools and DoDEA schools. To learn more about the implementation of the CCSS in DoDEA schools, visit www.dodea.eduBack-to-School/CommonCore.
DoDEA Schools and Facilities Renovation and Construction Initiative
In School Year 2010-2011 DoDEA launched an aggressive and comprehensive program to completely renovate or replace 134 of its schools worldwide. In FY 2013 Congress appropriated $605 million to support DoDEA’s school construction program.
DoDEA’s military construction (MILCON) program remains on track for School Year 2013-2014. Currently, 45 schools are in the design phase, another 14 are being advertised for construction award and 12 schools are actively under construction. DoDEA also benefits from new facilities that have been constructed overseas by host nations. This year two new schools, Humphreys High School and Humphreys Central Elementary School, will open in South Korea in support of the move from Seoul. Construction on both schools has been delayed and it is expected that students will move into the new schools later this school year. In the United States DoDEA will open the new addition to the West Point Middle School as well as starting renovation of the historic building that will be retained.
DoDEA recognizes that schools of the future must be flexible and adaptable, facilitating new and innovative ways to deliver instruction and meet the needs of all students. DoDEA's 21st Century schools take into consideration innovation in education, curriculum delivery, use of technology, and the growing expectations for sustainability and energy conservation. The Antilles Elementary School in Puerto Rico is under construction and when finished, it will be the first DoDEA school to completely accommodate delivery of 21st Century instruction.DoDEA School Year 2013-2014/5-5-5
Assessments and Student Performance
In support of a challenging curriculum, DoDEA continues to measure student performance with a variety of assessments, such as the TerraNova Multiple Assessment, the PSAT, the ACT, and the SAT. At the end of the year parents received the scores for the TerraNova, and parents are encouraged to contact schools how these results are used this year and how they can help at home.
DoDEA average TerraNova results continue to show achievement above the national average in Reading, Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies in all grades tested. From 2012 to 2013 DoDEA scores also show gains in most grades and subject areas. The 2013 SAT and ACT results will be released in the fall.
DoDEA schools analyze the test results for each grade, subject area, and for subgroups of students. These analyses help teachers to determine academic strengths and areas of improvement for each individual student that they can address in classroom instruction. Schools will explain results and instructional goals in parent-teacher conferences, newsletters, test publisher online resources, and other venues to help parents understand the test results.
All DoDEA schools participate in the continuous improvement process to further student achievement and to ensure continued accreditation by a prestigious U.S.-based accreditation agency, AdvancED, that is approved by the U.S. Department of Education. The accreditation process certifies that our schools adhere to challenging quality standards that support excellence in the education of all students. This year more than 40 schools will receive an external visit from AdvancED teams to certify the adherence to rigorous standards of excellence and continuous improvement of services for our students.
The aggregate results from DoDEA schools received during the accreditation visits on the 33 standard indicators showed that DoDEA schools scored above the AdvancED average on 29 of the 33 standards. Schools use the detailed recommendations of the reports to work on improvement of school services to students and stakeholders.
In order to increase student interest and college and career readiness in STEM the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and DoDEA have established a partnership. This partnership will leverage the strengths of both organizations to advance (STEM) education in communities where DoDEA schools and USACE activities are co-located.
The overall objectives are to: 1) connect and leverage USACE STEM professionals to support teachers with implementing engineering and design concepts into the curriculum; 2) increase student awareness and interest in STEM activities, projects, and careers; and 3) raise awareness of the USACE STEM priorities in the local communities in which they serve. To achieve these objectives the USACE STEM professionals-who range from engineers, biologists, physicists, architects, hydrologists, technologist, to scientists—will interact with students and teachers on a weekly basis, both in person and online. These professionals and DoDEA students will collaborate on projects, and their efforts will culminate in a competition.
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The competition will be held annually in conjunction with National Engineers Week, which is traditionally the week in February that coincides with George Washington’s birthday.
The purpose of the competition is to provide students with a realistic, engaging introduction to engineering; and to increase awareness of and interest in engineering among a large, diverse population of middle school students. The contest will provide students with an opportunity to:
- Integrate specific civil works projects or other USACE functions that align with DoDEA’s mathematics, science, and technology curriculum
- Experience engineering applications through a realistic, hands-on problem-solving approach
- Participate in the engineering design process--the application of mathematics, science, and technology to create devices and systems that meet human needs and solve authentic real world problems.
DoDEA is in the second year of implementation of four new high school mathematics courses. Algebraic Modeling, Financial Literacy, Engineering Applications and Advanced Functions were added to course offerings last school year in response to an increase in graduation requirement from three to four credits of mathematics. Three of the four credits must be earned in grades
9 – 12. DoDEA high schools have three years beginning with SY 12-13 to add these courses to their master schedules. All high schools are currently offering Algebraic Modeling with many adding Financial Literacy for SY13-14.
The DoDEA Virtual School piloted a trigonometry course with great success during this past summer. The purpose of the trigonometry course is to provide students summer coursework to enhance their readiness for success in AP Calculus AB. Beginning in the Spring semester of 2014, the Virtual School will add courses in support of Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra 2 for students who struggle in mathematics. This will enable students to retake and/or continue coursework over the summer remaining on track for graduation.
Implementation of the Common Core State Standards in mathematics will begin next school year through awareness building activities as we lay the foundation for full implementation. Students, parents, teachers, administrators and others will be provided information throughout the year detailing the elements of the Common Core Standards in mathematics, the instructional shifts that will occur, and the changes to expected student outcomes. Implementing the Common Core State Standards is very important for DoDEA not only in preparing students to be college and career ready in the 21st century but offering our transient student population a coherent and cohesive learning experience in mathematics as they move between DoDEA and Stateside schools.
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DoDEA Virtual High School
The DoDEA Virtual School (DVHS) piloted a trigonometry course with great success during this past summer. The purpose of the trigonometry course is to provide students summer coursework to enhance their readiness for success in AP Calculus AB. Beginning in the Spring semester of 2014, the Virtual School will add courses in support of Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra 2 for students who struggle in mathematics. This will enable students to retake and/or continue coursework over the summer remaining on track for graduation. DVHS is also adding two new World Language courses: French IV and Japanese III and three more Advanced Placement courses: AP Biology, AP Microeconomics and AP Psychology.
For more information about the program or to contact DoDEA Virtual School Program staff, please see the website at http://virtual-hs.dodea.edu.
DoDEA's Student Meal Program
DoDEA schools participate in the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National School Lunch Program. Student meals in DoDEA schools must meet the same USDA regulations and guidelines as schools throughout the United States for nutrition and meal components to include meals with zero trans-fat and less than 10% saturated fat. One-half of the grains served are whole grains (and by school year 2014-2015 all grains served will be whole grain), and the vegetables served must include a variety of nutrient dense dark green and red-orange varieties and legumes (dried beans and peas). In addition, students who qualify under federal guidelines are provided free and reduced-price meals. Over 10 million meals are served annually in DoDEA schools throughout the United States and overseas. Parents are encouraged to visit their child’s school to eat a meal with them in the cafeteria.
The Student Meal Program in DoDEA schools overseas is operated by the Exchange on Army and Air Force installations, NEX on Navy installations and the Marines in Iwakuni. Together, they provide 58,000 student meals daily to DoDEA students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade throughout Europe and the Pacific. The Student Meal Program in DoDEA schools in the United States (including Puerto Rico and Guam) is operated independently at each community by a Child Nutrition Director who oversees the cafeterias at each school.
Providing nutritious meals in DoDEA schools is an important priority. In addition to meeting USDA nutrition requirements many schools are well on their way to creating a holistically healthy school environment for their students and staff. DoDEA is investing time and resources to not only review and improve the Student Meal Program, but is also revising local school wellness policies and developing tools to assist school communities (students, teachers and parents) to implement local school wellness programs.
Three DoDEA school communities are participating in the DoD Healthy Base Initiative: Yokota, Japan; Quantico, Virginia; and Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Those three communities are among 13 military installations and agencies participating in a demonstration pilot aimed at increasing health and wellness of the total force, including civilians and family members. Within those three communities DoDEA will make specific efforts to encourage students to make nutritious food choices and increase their physical activity to assist in weight management. For additional information about the Healthy Base Initiative, please go to http://www.militaryonesource.mil/hbi.
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DoDEA's Student Transportation Program
A great deal of planning and coordination is involved in operating DoDEA's worldwide student transportation system. More than 50,000 DoDEA students are registered bus riders. These students travel nearly 56,000 miles every day on 1,500 separate routes. DoDEA also provides transportation for students traveling to and from curricular and co-curricular activities, after-school activities and clubs, sports practices and events, and other special school events. DoDEA provides special needs students with dedicated transportation services that are supported with trained safety aides on board every school transportation vehicle.
After school activities vary by school. DoDEA offers a full range of interscholastic athletics programs in high schools. All schools offer a range of academic clubs and activities to address a wide variety of student interests. Check with your school to see specific availability for after-school activities.
To learn more about enrollment, instruction, student meals, transportation and more, visit: www.dodea.edu/parents/parentresources.cfm.
The Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children
Military families encounter significant school challenges when dealing with enrollment, eligibility, placement, and graduation of their children due to frequent relocations in the course of their military service. To address these educational transition issues, the Council of State Governments, in cooperation with DoD, developed the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children. The Compact is an agreement among member states that address the key school transition issues encountered by military children in a consistent manner. As of July 2013, there are 45 member states. Each member state has adopted the Compact through legislation, appointed representation to an on-going governing National Commission, and developed State Councils that govern the compact within their state.
DoDEA represents DoD as an ex-officio member to the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children National Commission. In this role, DoDEA serves as an advisor and principal liaison between the Commission and DoD. DoDEA is committed to ensuring its own school policies and procedures mirror those in the Compact guidelines, and related rules to the extent permitted by law. As a result, DoDEA has established an internal committee to oversee the implementation of applicable provisions of the Compact in DoDEA schools. Establishing this committee provides another tangible manifestation of DoD’s commitment of support to military-connected school age children.
For additional information on the Interstate Compact visit the Military Interstate Children’s Compact Commission website at www.mic3.net.
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DoDEA’s Educational Partnership
The mission of the Educational Partnership Branch is to champion high quality education opportunities for military children in public schools by supporting military-connected local educational agencies (LEAs). Through partnership and outreach efforts, DoDEA mobilizes its experience and resources in pursuit of expanding educational opportunities for all children from military families. We capitalize on the vast portfolio of experiences and knowledge DoDEA has as a school system to promote continuity in academic and social support programs in military-connected school districts. We also seek opportunities to learn from those districts to share successful programs and practices. Additionally, we have oversight for policy and management of the Non-DoD School Program (NDSP) which serves 2,794 on 132 foreign locations by providing support and funding (approximately $60M annually) for the education of authorized command-sponsored dependents of military members and DoD civilian employees assigned to overseas areas where no DoDEA school is available within the commuting area.
Through legislation, DoDEA has the authority to share its experience, expertise, and resources with public schools that educate military-connected students. Since 2009, DoDEA has awarded 186 grants to military-connected LEAs—totaling nearly $223M. These projects provide academic and support programs to more than 750,000 students, including 260,000 military students, in over 1,100 schools. Some Partnership grants focus specifically on easing the challenges that military students face due to transitions and deployments, including a consortium grant with University of Southern California School of Social Work and Education and eight school districts in San Diego. The grant has improved school climate as well as social and academic results.
Since 2011, DoDEA has awarded $17M to the National Math Science Initiative (NMSI) to implement the Advanced Placement Training and Incentive Program in military-connected public high schools. In 2012, DoDEA challenged NMSI to raise $3.5 M in matching funds, thus expanding the program to 80 public schools in 20 states by 2014 with the goal of reaching a network of 250 military impacted schools. The results speak for themselves: The first cohort of ten schools has achieved a 51 percent increase in qualifying scores in AP Math, Science and English in the last school year – which is seven times the national average; and, qualifying AP scores in Math and Science increased by 64 percent.
In addition to providing grants, DoDEA develops and disseminates information and resources, and provides professional development opportunities for educators in military connected schools. Students at the Center resource guide provide educators with an understanding the unique issues military children face and provides the military community with information on public school systems. To date, over 20,000 Students at the Center guides have been distributed. Professional development has been provided to public school educators through a set of 16 special education modules to include face-to-face training. To date, DoDEA has distributed over 500 Special Education module sets to LEAs and trained over 700 teachers and administrators serving military-connected students.
The Partnership Branch also administers the DoD Impact Aid Supplement and Children with Severe Disabilities (CWSD) programs. Through these two programs $45 million in financial assistance was provided in 2012 to 145 LEAs in 36 states.
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Additional information about the services the Partnership Branch is providing in support of military-connected children can be found on our website at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DoDEA consists of the Department of Defense Dependents Schools located overseas, and the Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools located in the U.S. and its territories and possessions. DoDEA provides education to eligible DoD military and civilian dependents from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. DoDEA also provides support and resources to Local Educational Activities throughout the U.S. that serve children of military families.