Press Release: Military Families Lead New Initiative to Combat Education Challenges

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Military Families Lead New Initiative to Combat Education Challenges

Collaborative for Student Success partners with military spouses to underscore importance of rigorous, consistent standards for military students

WASHINGTON (MARCH 24, 2016) – Families of military service members and veterans understand the value of high, consistent education standards more than most. Moving an average of six to nine times throughout their child’s K-12 career, military families are often faced with the consequences of inconsistent standards – having to catch their students up to grade level in a new state, or watch them struggle to sit through material they’ve already learned. With that in mind, the Collaborative for Student Success is proud to announce its partnership with the new, spouse-led initiative called Military Families for High Standards, which advocates for high academic standards that limit the hardships faced by military students.

“It’s time that the public understood the educational burdens placed on military families as they move from base to base. Families should not have to choose between taking the whole family to a new duty station and sending their students to poor-quality schools, or separating the family,” said Christi Ham, chairwoman of Military Families for High Standards. “As a mom, former teacher and military spouse, I am excited to work with members of this initiative to advocate for high education standards for all military-connected students. Military families should not have to make even more sacrifices to ensure that their children get a high-quality education.”

High, consistent standards not only ensure that all military-connected students will be able to easily transfer from base to base and from school to school, but also allow teachers to prepare an adequately educated pool of recruits to fill the ranks in the long term. Military Families for High Standards is committed to stressing the importance of high-quality schools near bases, to avoid base closure and retaining good service members, instead of them leaving the force because of inadequate schooling options for their children.

“Teaching students to robust K-12 education standards – and assessing their progress – ensures that the children of our current service members and our veterans receive a high-quality education, no matter where they are,” said Jim Cowen, deputy director and director of military outreach for the Collaborative for Student Success.  “The collective military experience of those involved with Military Families for High Standards has taught them what matters most in assuring that military-connected students are ready for success in life after high school.”

For more information about Military Families for High Standards, visit


The Collaborative for Student Success is a grant-making initiative created with the pooled resources of a diverse group of regional and national education foundations deeply committed to improving public education. Its members share the belief that the successful implementation of the Common Core State Standards is an important next step in ensuring that all students are prepared to succeed at college level work. The mission of the Collaborative is to support the state-led efforts of State Education Agencies and local education organizations responsible for educating and informing stakeholders – parents, teachers, and community leaders – about the new state standards and assessments.