The Ohio Department of Education has designated Talawanda High School as a purple star school for 2022. The award honors schools that commit to serving students and families connected to the United States armed forces.
THS was one of 263 schools in Ohio to receive the designation. The school first won the award in 2019 and was listed as a renewal school this year.
To win the designation, a school must complete a list of required activities and one additional opportunity. According to the purple star website, required activities include having a staff person who serves as a liaison and which families with someone in the military can contact, and maintaining a page on its website featuring additional resources for military families.
The school can pick from five additional optional activities to complete: Providing professional development for staff on special considerations for military students and families; hosting military recognition events; implementing social and emotional development programs for military children; celebrating April as the month of the military child; and having the school board pass a resolution showing the schools support for military families.
Talawanda has a policy regarding military children that was implemented in 2011 and was revised in 2021. The policy, “Educational Opportunity for Military Children,” outlines educational opportunities promised by the school district which includes the rights in the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children (Compact). Compact helps address inequalities that military families face including relocation, enrollment, and graduation requirements.
The policy also outlines additional benefits for military families. Benefits include allowing students whose parents are relocating to apply for enrollment even if they don’t yet preside in TSD. Enrollment applications will be accepted electronically as well. Children of military families who are transitioning will also be permitted to participate in technology-based education.