Helping a student thrive when a parent is deployed. Supporting families facing deployment and reintegration. Improving peer sensitivity to military children.
In NH, where many of our military serve in the National Guard or Reserves, we do not always know who in our community is serving. Guardsmen and Reservists often work civilian jobs, so even their neighbors might not know they serve. When a child has a parent or other family member serving in the military, he or she may experience a loved one's absence for long periods of time – sometimes to a war-zone where he/she may be in harm's way and out of touch. The best way to identify and support a military child and family is to ASK!
At the point of school/program enrollment, ask the parent, "Have you or a family member ever served in the military?"
When the answer is "YES," you may consider thanking them for their service. You may also then be able to find out more from the parents about the family's military experience that will help you to provide the best possible services and referrals. Asking further questions will also help you to:
Read a vignette about how providers in the Children's Services & School Systems can make a big difference!
Following are some questions that could be asked in the context of gathering information for more effective referrals and services. Pay attention to non-verbal cues, and show respect, curiosity, and empathy. Also be aware that responsiveness and effective follow–up are critical to building trust and rapport.
Portable Document Format (.pdf). Visit nh.gov for a list of free .pdf readers for a variety of operating systems.Click or touch each question to see additional information.