Today, Senate Bill 138, the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children, unanimously passed the Senate Committee on Military Affairs, Space, and Domestic Security.
Since 2008, Florida has been a member of the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children. “Florida will renew its commitment to assisting these families by ensuring that as they move, we limit the amount of ‘red-tape’ they will face when they settle in their new locations and enroll their students in schools,” said bill sponsor Jeff Brandes, “With the passage of this bill, we will join forty-three other states and the District of Columbia in this agreement.”
In the state of Florida, approximately 31,000 children are dependents of military personnel. The compact provides common-sense solutions for many of the problems military families face as they frequently move around the country. From grade level transfers, to course credit reciprocity, even placement in specialized programs such as AP, IB, career and technical programs; this is a pragmatic approach to education transitions between sending and receiving states. The agreement also ensures that students aren’t inhibited from graduating on time due to a military-required move. All of the compact provisions are consistent with state and federal law and guarantee that as military dependent students change schools, the number one priority is educational success.
“As a veteran, I have seen the many families move as a result of a new deployment, said Brandes. “Our service men and women make many sacrifices to protect our country, renewing this compact is one way we can make their lives easier.”