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NEWS | Nov. 12, 2009

Maryland governor visits educator training program

By National Guard Bureau

TIMONIUM, Md. - Gov. Martin O’Malley along with Maryland Superintendant of School Dr. Nancy S. Grasmick and Army Brig. Gen. James A. Adkins, the adjutant general of Maryland today demonstrated their continued support of Maryland National Guardsmen and Reservists by observing a unique and innovative training course conducted by a training team from the Military Child Education Coalition. 

"I continue to be amazed by our citizen-soldiers and reservists who continue to give of themselves in service to our nation and state," said O’Malley. "That said, the O’Malley-Brown Administration is committed to doing all we can to ensure children of deployed service members have the support they need before, during and after deployments involving parents, brothers and sisters and other loved ones whom the children look up to. 

"We know educators play an important role in the day-to-day lives of children as they are often the first line of defense in identifying challenges that could be affecting them. That is why this type of training is so valuable and why our Administration is so supportive of it."

The Maryland National Guard Family Readiness Program hosted the Military Child Education Coalition as they provide training to educators to better understand the challenges children face when loved ones of the National Guard or Reserves are deployed or have returned from overseas deployments.

Trained educators will pass along their experiences to their colleagues throughout state school systems.

The Maryland State Department of Education has been a long-time partner with the Maryland Military Department in advancing efforts to work with children of deployed service members. 

"Members of the Maryland National Guard and Reserves provide an invaluable service to our nation and our state," said Adkins. "In supporting them, our approach has been to not only take care of the needs of our servicemen and women, but the entire family. We know that teachers can be invaluable partners in that effort, but only if they understand the impact deployments can have on military families. We are extremely pleased to be able to offer this type of training to our partners in the education community."

Grasmick said the training session provided critical information for educators. "Teachers and administrators gained a wealth of information about how to better serve military families," she said. "Educators need all the tools they can find to help these children succeed and flourish."

The Military Child Education Coalition identifies the challenges facing the highly mobile military child, increases awareness of these challenges in military and educational communities, and initiates and implements programs to meet the challenges.

It's goal is to level the educational playing field for military children wherever they are located around the world, and to serve as a model for all highly mobile children. MCEC's role is to help families, schools, and communities be better prepared to support children during these difficult and sometimes traumatic times in the life of military families.