USC University of Southern California

Building Capacity and Welcoming Practices In Military-Connected Schools

Building Capacity Resource Guides

Resource Guides on Military-Connected Students Now Available

On October 1st, Teachers College Press at Columbia University released our four resource guides on supporting military children in schools. Each guide is based on research and written specifically for teachers, school administrators, pupil personnel, and parents. They have been endorsed by the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, the Military Child Education Coalition and leading experts in education, social work, psychology and can be used as texts in University and District training programs.

The Building Capacity Resource Guide books outline how school professionals and parents can create a supportive school setting that helps military children thrive and provide an engaging combination of background knowledge on challenges facing military children and practical strategies that can be implemented to make students feel welcome and connected. Many of the strategies and ideas highlighted were inspired by our Consortium schools and the interns from USC, SDSU and UCSD.


The Teacher's Guide for Supporting Students from Military Families is an evidence-informed guide introducing pre- and in-service teachers to this population and provides essential tools to help minimize the impact of military life on student learning. It provides strategies and classroom practices to support these students and address issues such as frequent transitions between schools, gaps in academic progress, and social adjustment.

It shows how practices already being used in your school can be adapted to ease the transition for military students, and it also introduces original strategies, such as "A Hero Wall" honoring members of the military, friendship or memory gardens and military appreciation events.

Follow this link to view ordering information for the Teacher's Guide.


The School Administrator's Guide for Supporting Students from Military Families is an evidence-informed guide which introduces school administrators to this population and offers tools to help them implement school-wide programs that will support military students' learning.

This practical guide includes profiles of principals who have created welcoming school environments for military children and parents, lessons learning from the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) schools and a chapter on using data to improve school culture for military students to name a few.

Follow this link to view ordering information for the School Administrator's guide.


The Pupil Personnel Guide for Supporting Students from Military Familiesintroduces counselors, psychologists, and social workers to this population and provides the necessary tools to create one-on-one and school-wide practices to support military students.

The guide includes a primer on military culture and research highlighting how frequent school transitions and parental deployments affect the education of military children. It also includes examples of creative and effective projects designed to celebrate military children and support them through frequent school changes, a parent's deployment, or traumatic experiences.

Follow this link to view ordering information for the Pupil Personnel guide.

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The Military Family's Parent Guide for Supporting Your Child in School is a unique guide which provides parents with the information they need to choose a welcoming school or daycare program and suggests steps they can take to advocate for their children.

It also highlights the types of questions parents should ask about how their children are faring socially, emotionally, and academically, such as what can I do to help my child make a smooth transition to a new school and what resources or staff does my school have to meet the needs of military children.

Follow this link to view ordering information for the Military Parent's guide.