News Image

This week, the Ohio Department of Education announced that Monroe High School is one of 165 Ohio schools to receive Purple Star designations as members of the Purple Star Class of 2023. Eighty-eight Ohio schools received the esteemed award for the first time and 77 schools earned a renewal after three years as dedicated Purple Star Schools.

Purple Star Schools show a significant commitment to supporting the unique educational and social-emotional needs of military-connected children and their families. These schools recognize that military-connected students must move whenever their active-duty parent receives a relocation order and will change schools far more often than their civilian peers.

According to the Military Child Education Coalition, a military-connected child can expect to move six to nine times from during the span of their K-12 educational career, with approximately 200,000 students transitioning to a new school in any given year.

Frequent moves, family separations through deployments, and reintegration issues make life especially challenging for military families,” said Monroe Local Schools Purple Star Liaison and Attendance Officer Kelley Dudleson. “Our goal is to help military-connected students feel at home and well supported. I personally understand these challenges because I am part of a military family too. It is a true honor for Monroe High School to be recognized and I hope to see more of our schools become Purple Star recipients in the future!”

In order to receive the Purple Star designation, a school must demonstrate its commitment to serving military students and families through a series of required and optional activities identified by Ohio’s Purple Star Advisory Board, including:

  • The school must have a staff point of contact for military students and families who serves as the primary liaison between them and the school.
    • The liaison completes professional development on special considerations for military students and families under federal law.
    • The liaison identifies and informs teachers of the military-connected students in their classrooms and the special considerations military families and students should receive.
  • The school maintains a dedicated page on its website featuring resources for military families.

Last month, Monroe hosted its inaugural military signing ceremony to recognize graduating seniors who have committed to service in the U.S. military. Students signed commitment letters, received red, white and blue cords, and were presented with their first challenge coin from honored guest and veteran Congressman Warren Davidson.

“At Monroe, we strive to meet the diverse needs of our learners in any way we can,” said Monroe Local Schools Superintendent J. Robert Buskirk. “Thanks to a series of coordinated efforts between Mrs. Dudleson, Mr. Prohaska and our high school staff to meet the procedural and professional development requirements, we are now more capable than ever to serve our military students and families. We are incredibly proud to have received our district’s first Purple Star designation and we look forward to the continued work of removing barriers for all of our Hornets.”