Military Families

PTA values the service of all men and women who serve in the military. We can never forget that even as our military personnel make sacrifices each day for our country, so do their families. Regardless of whether they are located overseas or at home, our military families provide a level of support that many of us may never understand, and we want to return the favor.  

PTA provides resources and opportunites for enriching activities for the service men and their familes. Military families bring a richness of experience to their schools, their communities, and their PTA units. We owe it to them and to ourselves to help them make their family sacrifices as painless and successful as possible.

2018 National Guard/Utah PTA Veterans Day Concert

Utah PTA/Utah National Guard Annual Veterans Day Concert
Tabernacle on Temple Square
November 10, 2018 at 7:00 PM

Attached you will find information for the Saturday, November 10, 2018, Veterans Day Concert to be held at the Tabernacle on Temple Square.  Come early to enjoy the Utah National Gaurd Band Commemorate 100th Years since the Great War, World War I. 

Please click below for information on how students may enter the Utah PTA/Utah National Guard Essay Contest.
Please click below to print a beautiful poster prepared by the Utah National Guard to let you PTA and school patrons know of this wonderful event.

Military Family Essay Winners

Every year Utah PTA, in partnership with Utah National Guard, holds an essay contest for Military Families. The three winning students from Elementary School, Middle School/Junior High, and High School receive a cash prize and are honored at the Utah National Guard Veteran's Day Concert in November

A Military Family is one that has a family member presently serving or who has served in the Active, Reserve or National Guard (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard). If children live with guardians or grandparents who are presently serving or who have served, they are also included. 

The theme for the essay contest is “Why I am proud of my Veteran!”

The 2017 Essay Contest Winners are:


(L-R) Elizabeth Bennion, Elementary; Catherine Moody, Junior High; Isabelle Danie, High School

National PTA and Military Child Education Coalition Unite to Support Military Families

Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children

•   Military families encounter significant school challenges when dealing with enrollment, eligibility, placement, and graduation of their children, due to frequent relocations in the course of service to our country. Most military children will have six to nine different school systems in their lives from kindergarten to 12th grade.

•   The Council of State Governments' National Center for Interstate Compacts, in cooperation with the Department of Defense, has worked to develop an interstate compact that deals with these issues.

•   The compact reflects input from policy experts and stakeholders from 18 different organizations, including representatives of parents, teachers, school administrators, military families, and federal, state, and local officials.

•   The Compact will allow for the uniform treatment, at the state and local district level, of military children transferring between school dists and states.

•   Each participating state must adopt the Compact through legislation; it will go into effect when adopted by 10 states. (This is not a mandate to states, as participation by states is completely voluntary.)

•   Each Compact state will appoint representation to an on-going governing Commission which will enact necessary rules and give further guidance to the Compact's implementation. Only those state commissioners will have voting authority.

•   Efforts have begun to educate state policymakers regarding the need for the Compact, and the nature and widespread use of Interstate Compacts, generally.

The National PTA Partnership will Educate and Mobilize Communities to Support Military-Connected Children

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 12, 2011) – In response to First Lady Michelle Obama’s and Dr. Jill Biden’s “Joining Forces” initiative, National PTA and the Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC) announced they will partner to engage military families and support the more than one million grade school-age military children.

The partnership will work to build connections between military and civilian parents and students through programs and activities in highly military-impacted school districts. The two organizations will also work together to educate state PTA leaders on fostering a common understanding of military child education issues and communicate the role that they can play in supporting these families.

“For decades our military-based PTAs around the world have worked hard to increase family engagement and student achievement. This partnership helps us take it a step further by educating all of our PTAs and civilian parents on military family life so that we all are more aware and responsive to the unique needs of military children and families,” says Charles J. “Chuck” Saylors, National PTA President.

“We have enormous respect for the mission of the PTA and this robust partnership presents a powerful opportunity to support America’s military-connected children,” said Mary M. Keller, Ed.D., President and CEO of MCEC. “Mrs. Obama and Dr. Biden have done so much to mobilize support for the children of our men and women in uniform- these children also serve,” added Dr. Keller.

Some of the key deliverables to the partnership include the development of a toolkit and guide for parents that describes the unique needs of military families and provide strategies and ideas for them to better engage military families. The toolkit will include a “Guide to Engaging with Military-Connected Parents” developed by MCEC. The partnership will also work to increase the number of schools nationwide participating in their parent and student engagement programs.

When the New School Beckons: Military Families in Transition


When the New School Beckons: Military Families in Transition

by: Kathleen P. O’Beirne

Every year, many students move with their families to new communities. Some moves are to allow one or both parents to pursue a new job opportunity, or unfortunately, a move may be the result of a job layoff or divorce. Children in military families move more frequently than their civilian peers. In addition to their mobility, these children may be faced with multiple deployments of one or more parents. More National Guard and Reserve members are being called up, and many military parents are receiving back-to-back combat assignments. It is crucial for educators and school families to understand and talk about these dynamics so they can act as partners in supporting children in military families.

The first step in supporting mobile military students is understanding the normal reactions to a move. While the process can go smoothly, there can be especially trying times as well, depending on the age and developmental stage of the child. Teens tend to have an especially tough time leaving their peers; on the other hand, late elementary school students may love the adventure. Knowing the basic stages of a move can help educators and school families understand the emotions often felt by transferring students and their families—and can help them find ways to ease the transitions.

Stages of transition

Stage 1: Anticipation and notification of a move 
Most military families know approximately when a new assignment is due to occur. The longer the forewarning, the easier it is for families to plan ahead. For high school students, advance warning may enable them to take classes that may not be offered at their new school. In many cases, their current school will allow them to take certain courses they might not ordinarily have been allowed to take.

Once the orders actually come, parents should be sure to alert their children’s schools at least several weeks before the move is scheduled to occur to allow the schools enough time to compile a thorough cumulative folder for each student and provide exit counseling. Key during this period is for the transferring students to hear from their teachers and peers how they have made a difference. Research on military families shows that the exit time is even more critical than the first days at the new school. The quality of the landing is largely determined by the quality of the launch.

A transferring student’s parents and current school counselor should communicate with the new school to share information about the student’s special needs and achievements and to ensure proper placement. If the family has been active in PTA, the PTA president at the family’s current school should offer to alert the PTA president at the new school of the family’s impending arrival. The PTA at the new school will be able to ease the family’s transition by helping the family get acquainted with the school, the community, and other PTA families.

Stage 2: The actual move
The actual move is a period of high tension in most families. Parents who make an honest attempt to listen to their children’s concerns can help their children cope by recognizing their sacrifices and courage. Parents also can help their children understand the duty and commitment of their military parent(s) that makes the move necessary.

Many military-connected high schools now have the Military Child Education Coalition’s (MCEC’s) counseling referral system, which connects families and students with counselors so they can discuss upcoming moves and their ramifications. (The MCEC website [] lists participating schools.)

Despite the widespread use of e-mail to send documents, military families should hand-carry copies of official school documents to ensure that there are no delays in enrollment.

Stage 3: House-hunting 
If military quarters will not be assigned, the family may have to search for its own housing. This is an opportunity for the whole family to learn decision-making skills, and if the family is not experiencing financial stress, can be exciting. But while finding a home can be a thrill, it can also put families on edge by taxing their free time and requiring them to deal with complicated financial and legal details.

Stage 4: Making it home
Moving requires families to reestablish order out of chaos. Boxes must be unpacked, and bedrooms and living areas must be set up. Parents can help their children attain a feeling of control by letting them make decisions about which room is theirs and where their pictures, stuffed animals, books, and other personal items will be placed.

Stage 5: Getting to know the new school 
The real adventure for transferring students begins when they enter their new school. New students get a school handbook, school map, and course schedule to add to any information they gathered before the move. The PTA and the school counselor should ensure that the school provides an ambassador or student guide to help introduce new students to the school—especially the lunchroom, which can be the most intimidating place in the school for new arrivals. (The MCEC Student 2 Student Initiative Web page [] has great tips on implementing a student guide program.) The parents of new students should be contacted by the PTA with a personal invitation to attend the next PTA meeting.

Teens often find the transition to a new school very trying. They tend to be sensitive about social matters and usually hate being the object of attention. Because their parents are unfamiliar with the new area and the new students, transferring teens may temporarily lose some of the privileges they had in their previous home, such as driving and staying late after school with friends—and they may resent that loss of freedom. It may take teens one to two months to become comfortable in the new school. Flipping through scrapbooks and e-mailing friends from their previous school may help students keep a sense of self during this time.

Stage 6: Self-discovery 
Students will spend the next two to four months forming stronger connections to their new environment. They will be selective about their acquaintances and activities and may assess themselves and others in an uncomfortably intense way. Younger children usually skate through most of this stage.

Students will need to exercise care as they navigate the choices available. The “fringe groups” are always looking for new members, but the other groups tend to take a while to open up. If counselors, teachers, and families are supportive during this time, mobile students will emerge with a strong sense of themselves and a purposeful commitment to their new school and community. Students may connect to a school community more quickly if they join a school group, such as band or a sports team.

Stage 7: Turning point—recognition and acceptance 
After passing through stage six, with the self-doubt and loneliness that can accompany it, mobile students often find that stage seven is a radiant burst of joy. Something happens about six months after a move that lets students know they have arrived. They know how to solve a complex problem; they become the “go-to person” because others recognize their special skills or talents, such as their problem-solving ability. And, most of all, people know them and like them.

The pitfalls of mobility 
As is abundantly clear, social and psychological transitions after a physical move take time. At times, it may feel like forever. The most realistic way for families to deal with these transitions is one day at a time. If a student does not pass through the transitional stages within the normal time frames, then a nudge via the school guidance counselor or military family support center may be helpful.

If families move more frequently than once every two years, they may experience cumulative relocation or cumulative deployment fatigue, which occur when there is insufficient time for achieving a full transition. Students and families who have not stayed in the same place for at least 18 months after stage seven may need extra help with their new transitions.

A healthy new start
While military families are never the same after a relocation or deployment cycle, they can achieve successful transitions. And PTA can help. PTA has a network of local units that serve military children, parents, and educators in various parts of the world. Involvement in PTA enables parents to function in a familiar group setting and connect with their new community through their children’s educational activities.

Military families bring a richness of experience to their schools, their communities, and their PTA units. We owe it to them and to ourselves to help them make their frequent but necessary transitions as painless and successful as possible.

Kathleen P. O’Beirne has published many articles on and resources for military families. She was raised in a military family and is a Navy wife and mother. She can be reached at


5 Things School Leaders Can Do To Connect With Military Families

The average military family moves three times more often than its civilian counterpart, according to the Department of Defense. This transiency often disrupts a military family child’s friendships, academic progress, and sense of connectedness. School leaders can ensure that during the time military children are in their schools—however short that time—these students have a sense of stability and safety and stay on track toward graduation. Here are 5 things school leaders can do to build connections:

1. Develop a welcome packet for military children. Include information about the mission of the school district, graduation requirements, curriculum requirements, attendance requirements, dress code requirements, immunizations, and school calendar, as well as school-specific information about clubs and organizations, a map of the school, and bell schedule. Also include information about resources for military families, including special workshops, orientations, and transition activities. (See a sample Checklist for Transferring Students on the Military Child Education Coalition website.)

2. Establish a buddy program for military children at each school. The buddy is a friendly face; a key source of information about the school, its programs, extracurricular activities, sports, expectations, and traditions; and someone to sit with at lunch and at athletic events. The Junior Student to Student and the Student to Student transition programs developed by the Military Child Education Coalition are effective models (

3. Encourage parents and guardians to be active in the school. Their presence in the school may provide a sense of comfort to ease their child’s transition. Encourage their involvement in the PTA, on committees, and on school and district planning teams. In addition, parents may be able to share some insights into how the school can make their child feel more connected. Publicize volunteer opportunities in school newspapers and on the school and district websites.

4. Promote student participation in extracurricular activities. Extracurricular activities are an excellent way for students to meet classmates and quickly feel a part of the school, so help them explore all the options. Military students may come to the school after the deadline for signing up for activities, auditioning for drama productions, or trying out for sports—encourage teachers and coaches to find a place for them anyway.

5. Encourage parents, guardians and students to become involved with national organizations. Involvement in national organizations such as Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and 4H will help families connect to the community. Association with national organizations also will pave the way for continued connections when the families move to a different community, where the organization can provide a sense of continuity.


Military Family Board Specialist


By Kathy Allred, Utah PTA Military Family Specialist, National PTA Military Family Support Committee,

                The life of military families and children has always had challenges, foremost among them being frequent relocations and separations. Every time military families move, children have to adapt, make new friends, get used to new schools, and find new clubs and teams to join. It is hard for kids to have to rebuild their world every time and find their place in it. Having a PTA board member as a Military Family Appointee or Specialist provides a powerful opportunity to raise awareness and build support to help these children meet the unique challenges they face! It is an opportunity to recognize military children and youth for their heroism, character, courage, sacrifices and resilience.

 Did you know?

  • Two million military children have experienced a parental deployment since 2001.
  • There are currently 1.7 million military children of active duty members worldwide.
  • Nearly 80 percent of military children attend public schools throughout the United States.
  • The average military family moves three times more often than their civilian counterpart.
  • The repeated and extended separations and increased hazards of deployment compound stressors in military children's lives.
  • One third of school-age military children show psychosocial behaviors such as being anxious, worrying often, crying more, and/or acting out.
  • The U.S. military consists of approximately 1.4 million active duty service members and 810,000 National Guard and Selected Reserve.  Usually Active Duty military families live on or near military installations. National Guard and Reserve families might never live near a military installation, and look within their community for educational services, friendship and support.
  • A positive school environment, built upon caring relationships among all participants—students, teachers, staff, administrators, parents and community members—has been shown to impact not only academic performance but also positively influence emotions and behaviors of  military connected students.
  • Supporting the military child takes a school-wide and community-wide effort, and professional development opportunities to inform school staff of the academic and social-emotional challenges military children face.

Utah PTA has a Military Family Specialist and we encourage all local PTAs to have one. On our website,, under Programs then Military Families, you will find numerous ideas and resources to help all school personnel, PTA leaders and members understand, identify and recognize these military families and children. In Utah there are over 18,000 children who have one or more parents, step-parents, siblings, or extended family members on full-time duty status in the military, including members of the National Guard and Reserves on active duty. Help us to help them!


What are the challenges our Military Families face? They face frequent relocations, educational inconsistencies-different school systems, adjusting to new neighbors and communities, leaving friends and making new friends, family separations, grandparents as care givers, disability or loss of family member and many other challenges.

What can PTA do? Communicate with military families, educate the community, advocate eliminating nation-wide educational inconsistencies, and being a source of information and support.

How do we reach and include them? Identify them, and find out who they are. Invite them, welcome them, and ask them to participate. Inform them of events and programs and communicate with them. Involve them, because volunteering is what they do.  Include them, because no job is too small to use their skills.

How does PTA benefit Military Families?  PTA supports them by reaching out to them. PTA sustains them by being there for them. PTA leaders and members recognize and honor their sacrifice and acknowledge their service.

Ideas to Celebrate and Recognize Military Families and Children

  1. Have a patriotic program in a School Assembly (See Planning Assembly on website: and wear a camouflage ribbon or article of clothing on Assembly Day, or on Veteran’s Day, President’s Day or any patriotic day.
  2. Have the students wear red, white and blue to school and have each child describe what each color means to them. Then discuss the real meaning of the colors.
  3. Have students create artwork that promotes patriotism and display it in the classroom and/or school. This could be done anytime during the school year but throughout November, Military Family Month or April, the Month of the Military Child, or around any patriotic holiday it would be especially meaningful.
  4. Encourage the reading of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.
  5. Present a patriotic play or story in class prior to Armed Forces Day, Veteran’s Day, Flag Day or Memorial Day.
  6. Have a “Take Your Veteran to School Day” (See ideas on website: Suggest veteran wear his/her military uniform to the assembly, or a program or to the child’s classroom. The child could introduce him/her.
  7. Have students write a paper on “Serving our Nation” by interviewing a former or current member of the military.
  8. Sing a patriotic song, or learn a dance or memorize a patriotic poem as a class.
  9. Have students write a paragraph, poem or short story about, “Why I am Grateful to Those in Military Service”.
  10. Invite a student’s military family member to the class to explain what their military service meant/means to them.
  11. Have the students write a letter, as a class or individually, to a soldier. (Mailing addresses can be provided)

Celebrate Patriotic holidays and/or Military Family Month in November and Month of the Military Child in April (See ideas, planning timelines and suggested patriotic program on website:      

National PTA Supports our Military Families by creating and continuing The National PTA® Military Alliance for Parents and Partners. This is a group of organizations that work together to provide resources to and advocate for military-connected families. MAPP develops collaborative strategy to create awareness of military families and their needs. National PTA has a Military Family Support Committee. Along with MAPP, it serves military families and PTA by providing and developing resources that will help and support them.

The participants include: AUSA: Association of the United States Army, DoDEA: U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity, MCEC: Military Children Education Coalition, MISA: Military Impacted Schools Association, and the NMFA: National Military Family Association

Resources on the Internet: Utah PTA:,   National PTA:,  Military Children Education Coalition: , National Military Family Association:,  Military Impacted Schools Association:,  U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity:

Q&A: Meeting the Military Child's Needs


An interview with Professor Robert Blum of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Q: Does deployment have an impact on kids in the school setting?

Blum: It can have a tremendous impact and it can depend on the type of school setting. A child who has a parent in the Reserves, for example, may be in a school where there are no other children whose parents are deployed. That child may feel extremely isolated. We often don’t ask if children have parents who are deployed, so at times schools don’t even know about it until a problem arises.

Other kids are in Military Impacted Schools, where there are large numbers of children who have parents who are deployed. Those children also face challenges associated with deployment.

Q: What can schools do to support kids who have parents who are deployed?

Blum: The kinds of things schools can to do include:

  • Ask kids if they have parents who are deployed, particularly deployed in combat zones in Afghanistan or Iraq.
  • Be very sensitive to timing issues, such as when a parent may be home on furlough, or when a child may be particularly distressed under other circumstances.
  • Reach out to the residual parent [the parent who is not deployed] and see what he or she sees as needed for their child in the school.
  • Be sensitive to how current events are taught. Most of us discuss current events, such as the war Afghanistan and Iraq, as relative abstractions. But children talk and think about it in terms of their father or their mother. It is at a very different personal level. This isn’t to say we don’t discuss it, but it is to say we need to be sensitive to those kinds of issues.

Q: What are some challenges military kids face when transferring to a new school?

Blum: There are a range of issues.

  • Military families and military children are amongst the most transient of populations. It is not uncommon to see kids who have grown up in military families who have been in 5, 7 or 9 different schools by the end of their high school career. There is very high mobility. With high mobility come issues of engagement, disengagement and reengagement. These are stressful for kids.
  • Transfer of records from one school to another has historically been very complicated. Delays in transfer of records, which often can take weeks or months, can be problematic and can result in students being placed in inappropriate classes, for example.
  • Coming into a school at a time of the year when most people don’t come into schools – at the middle of a term, for example – is also very challenging for kids.
  • State graduation requirements, such as "you can’t graduate unless you take fill-in-the-blank course," can preclude a student who enters the school in the middle of their senior year from graduating.
  • Joining extracurricular and sports programs can be another challenge. In a previous school, a student may have been a gifted athlete, but in the new school he or she may not have those opportunities.

So I would suggest that schools need to be attentive to all of these complications that military children face.

Robert W. Blum MD, MPH, Ph.D., is the William H. Gates, Sr., Professor and Chair of the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Take a Veteran to School

Take a Veteran to School

Take a Veteran to School Day is a national program developed by HISTORY to link veterans with students nationwide. Schools and communities invite veterans of all backgrounds to share their stories and receive thanks for their service. Schools typically organize these programs on or around Veterans Day, but you can plan an event all year round to honor veterans and hear their stories of service. Teachers, register your Take a Vet to School Day event today and we'll send you 30 free Take a Veteran to School Day wristbands while supplies last.
Click here to register!

Launched in 2007, thousands of schools nationwide have participated in Take a Veteran to School Day. From single class visits to all-school assemblies, these events provide a way for students to learn more about the history of Veterans Day and about the experiences of veterans from all backgrounds and walks of life. Inviting veterans to share their stories connects generations while helping our young people learn about the past.

HISTORY has created curriculum guides for grades K-12 to help connect this program to your curriculum. We also have an easy How-To guide which gives suggestions for organizing a Take a Veteran to School Day event, whether it be large or a more simple gathering. On this site, you will also find guidelines for interviewing veterans and links to the Veterans History Project of the Library of Congress. All veterans have important stories to tell, and Take a Veteran to School Day is a great platform for oral history and community-based projects involving veterans.

View and download the resources on this site to get started organizing your event. Questions? Email us at

How-To Guides
How-To Guide (English) (584K)
How-To Guide (Spanish) (971K)

For more resources for "Take a Veteran to School"l and "Thank a Veteran at Work" visit the Resources section.

Teacher Resources

Attached Documents: 

Celebrate and Show Support for Military Children! -- April is Month of the Military Child


Each April, America honors the courage and recognizes the sacrifice of over 1.7 million children in military families nationwide. The life of military children has always had its challenges, foremost among them being frequent relocations. Every time families move, children have to make new friends, get used to new schools, and find new clubs and teams to join. A lot of military children take these changes in stride and some even thrive on them, but it is hard - kids have to rebuild their world every time and find their place in it. Month of the Military Child provides a powerful opportunity to raise awareness and build support to help these children meet the unique challenges they face! It is an opportunity to recognize military children and youth for their heroism, character, courage, sacrifices and continued resilience.

This year's theme, "Proud, Ready & Resilient," highlights military children's unique lifestyle and their ability to succeed despite frequent relocations, reintegration, deployments, loss or care for a wounded parent.

Below are a number of resources to help guide you with ways that you can raise awareness of the military children in your schools and local communities during the month of April:

National Military Family Association
Community Toolkit
Military Kids Toolkit
Military Teens Toolkit

DODEA (Department of Defense Education Activity) offers speaking points and free downloadable posters to use for promotion

Speaking Points

Marketing Materials

Operation Military Kids
Check with the state contact of Operation Military Kids for opportunities to cross-promote and partner with existing events during the month of April.

Month of the Military Child is an important observance and can be a lot of fun. So please be encouraged to get the word out in your school and your community! Join in honoring and celebrating military children during the month of April.

Note: PTA presidents can “Google” Month of the Military Child, for lots of information and ideas!

Ideas to Recognize Military Families


  1. Wear a camouflage ribbon or article of clothing on Assembly Day, Veteran’s Day or any patriotic day
  2. Have students create artwork that promotes patriotism and display it in the classroom and/or school. This could be done anytime during the school year but throughout November, Military Family Month or April, the month of the Military Child, it would be especially meaningful.
  3. Encourage the reading of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.
  4. Present a patriotic play or story in the classroom, prior to Armed Forces Day, Veteran’s Day, Flag Day or Memorial Day.
  5. Invite a student’s military family member to the class to explain what their military service meant/means to them.
  6. Recommend Military Family members wear their service uniform to a program, assembly or to the child’s classroom. Have the military child introduce them.
  7. Have students write a paper on “Serving our Nation” by interviewing a former or current member of the military.
  8. Sing a patriotic song at the beginning of class.
  9. Have students write a paragraph, poem or short story about, “Why I am Grateful to Those in Military Service”.
  10. Have the students write a letter, as a class or individually, to a soldier. (Mailing addresses can be provided)
  11. Memorize a patriotic poem as a class.
  12. Have the students wear red, white and blue to school and have each child describe what each color means to them. Then discuss the meaning of the colors.
  13. Tell the story of Betsy Ross and the making of our flag.
  14. Learn a dance or a game that was played in the colonies and perform it as a class for the school.
  15. Have books on early patriots and/or American heroes available. Have the children do book reports on the men and women who made our nation great.
  16. Learn a dance or a game that was played in the colonies and perform it as a class for the school.


Utah PTA Military Family Proclamation

Utah PTA Military Family Proclamation

WHEREAS, this year, 2013, marks Utah PTA’s second annual Utah PTA Military Family Month observance… paying tribute and giving appreciation to military families for their strength, commitment, sacrifices, and unconditional support of our troops; and

Whereas, tens of thousands of brave Utahans have demonstrated their courage and commitment to freedom by serving in the military and have taken the oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; and

WHEREAS, there are over 18,000 children in Utah who have one or more parents, step- parents, siblings, or extended family members on full-time duty status in military service of the United States, including members of the National Guard and Reserves on active duty orders; and

WHEREAS, we appreciate the strength and sacrifice of military families who also serve when their family members and other caring adults sacrifice to defend our freedom, and who provide support to their enlisted family members, endure long periods of separation, and move  frequently; and

WHEREAS, the children of military men and women face unique challenges, Utah PTA has committed to be an active participant in the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children which will help these military families when they transition from school system to school system across state lines; and

WHEREAS, the spouses, youth and children of our service members are major contributors to the fabric of strength in their classes and schools every day; and

WHEREAS, military families continue to make significant contributions to families, schools, communities, our state and the Nation, despite prolonged and repeated absences of one or both parents; and

WHEREAS, these military families are a source of pride and honor to us all, and it is only fitting that we take the time to recognize their contributions, celebrate their spirit, and  honor their sacrifices; and therefore

Therefore, I, Liz Zentner, President of Utah PTA, do hereby proclaim and recognize November 2013 as Utah PTA Military Family Month, and urge my fellow citizens to observe this month by connecting with military children, military families and the communities where we work, live and play to provide support to all our Utah Military Families and call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.