Keeping Students at the Center: Learning and Resource Modules for School Liaisons


Read a quick introduction to the online learning modules and access a clickable outline of all the information they contain.

Module 1: Introduction

Welcome to the Department of Defense Education Activity’s (DoDEA) online learning and resource modules for School Liaisons. These modules contain practical information and useful resources for School Liaisons with varying backgrounds and levels of experience.

Module 2: About DoDEA

The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) was created by the Department of Defense (DoD) to educate the children of military and civilian families connected to the military throughout the world. DoDEA is a worldwide education system that educates students in grades PK–12, offering a wide range of programs and supports to students and families. As students transfer into and out of DoDEA schools from the public school system, School Liaisons can offer support to mitigate the impact of transitions. School Liaisons serve as the primary liaison between community schools, commanding officers, and military families. They link the military family to individuals or groups who can solve whatever problem they confront.

Module 3: Non-DoD Schools Program

The Non-DoD Schools Program (NDSP) is designed to provide financial assistance and support for the academic success of children who are dependents of military families stationed in foreign locations. The program’s goal is to ensure military-connected children receive a quality education abroad that both meets U.S. graduation standards and prepares for them for college and career success. This module explains important aspects of the eligibility, enrollment, and reimbursement process associated with Non-DoD Schools Program services that will help School Liaisons inform military families how to maximize eligible supports to ensure the best education for their child. School Liaisons play a critical role in assisting families navigate these important services and reimbursements.

Module 4: The U.S. Public Education System

This module explores the organization of the U.S. public education system; provides information about Federal laws that provide assistance and establish some requirements for this system, such as the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA); and considers current trends and prospective policy changes that could impact military-connected children. The information in this module is intended to provide School Liaisons with a basic understanding of K–12 education in the U.S., from which the School Liaison can build more tailored knowledge that is specific to local context.

Module 5: Impact Aid

This module provides information about the history of Impact Aid programs from the Department of Education (ED) and the Department of Defense (DoD), their purpose, how they are administered and suggestions for improving the participation of military families in Impact Aid form collection processes for the ED Impact Aid programs.

Module 6: School Choice

This module provides School Liaisons with a guide to the types of school options that exist across the country for military families, the types of criteria families may consider when choosing a school, and additional ways in which School Liaisons can be helpful in the process of school selection. For families, the issue of school choice can be intensely personal. School Liaisons can provide needed information and resources to ensure that families are making the best and most informed choice for their children.

Module 7: How School Performance Is Determined

This module provides information on the laws, formulas, and structures that control how school performance is assessed in the U.S. education system. It also explains the importance of parental advocacy for their child’s education and advises how School Liaisons and parents can use information on school performance to promote parental engagement in their community.

Module 8: Supporting Student Success

In this module School Liaisons learn about various military and nonmilitary resources available to help meet the unique needs of military-connected children and ensure their academic success. Connecting families, schools, and community groups to appropriate resources that offer targeted and actionable information is an integral part of the duties of the School Liaison. This module offers a general understanding of the common challenges that military-connected children face and provides School Liaisons the tools they need to offer solutions across a variety of audiences.

Module 9: Supporting Students With Special Needs

Children with special needs include those with learning disabilities, emotional disorders, developmental disabilities, autism, hearing or visual impairment, speech or language impairment, and developmental delay. Schools are required to provide special services mandated by a Federal law called the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to students with these conditions and others.

Module 10: Building and Maintaining Relationships

This module offers information and practical examples to help School Liaisons create sound and productive relationships with key stakeholders. These include community groups, parents, and school officials that can influence the academic success of a military-connected child. Relationship building is a key feature of any School Liaison’s day-to-day duties and is of critical importance to ensure military families are supported.