So, what about military schools? When might you consider sending your son or daughter to a military school? Let’s settle a couple of things before we proceed: military schools are not places you send a child with discipline or other issues. They are not reform schools or schools for troubled youth. (If a professional such as a psychologist or psychiatrist recommends that your child attend a therapeutic school, you will have plenty of options for that purpose.)Military schools are genuine institutions of learning with a specific focus: military training. Secondly, military service is not required when you attend a military high school. If your child decides that military service is a career path which she wants to pursue, then a military school will have given her a good start.
Take a few minutes to see what a day in the life of a cadet at Hargrave Military Academy is like.
In life just about anything worth doing well requires lots of discipline. Discipline takes hard work, persistence, stamina and time. In an era when instant gratification seems endemic, good old-fashioned discipline lays a solid foundation for success in adult life. Discipline evolves into a pattern of self-discipline. After several years of this kind of training your child will know what she has to do to accomplish her objectives. Military schools serve up discipline as regularly as they serve breakfast.
Missouri Military Academy sums it up very well:
Structure goes hand in hand with discipline. Structure and discipline sound rigorous and they are. If your child is accustomed to doing whatever she wants whenever she wants to do it, the structure which a military school offers will take some getting used to. Think of structure as the organization which allows discipline to produce results and you are beginning to understand how military schools work. Understanding how to attain goals and results begins with developing basic skills. If you are beginning to think that there is perhaps a bit too much rigidity in all of this, just remember that discipline and structure are the framework for growth. Your child’s growth.
Military schools can give your child’s life purpose and direction. A key component of military schools training is leadership. Leaders are fashioned one step at a time. There are many pieces to the leadership picture. Military schools are very proficient at developing leadership skills. Leadership is not only about leading a platoon into a win at war games. Leadership involves character, judgment, compassion and trust. You can begin to understand how learning how to lead can be beneficial in just about any endeavor. It’s all about managing people. Military schools teach these valuable lessons effectively and at an impressionable age.
Culver Academies expresses this sentiment succinctly in their description of their leadership curriculum:
"The leadership curriculum, for both boys and girls, explores the core values of effective leadership – good communication and listening skills, group dynamics, consensus building, decision making, goal setting, negotiation, motivation, and ethics."
Many military schools offer JROTC or Junior Regular Officer Training Corps. This is a Federal program sponsored by the United States Army. The Army cannot recruit high school students. So it uses the JROTC program to expose young people to the possibilities and potential of military service with the hope that some of them might choose to become part of the armed forces in later life. Needless to say, military schools are committed to the success of their graduates. If a military career is part of your child’s plan, a military school makes perfect sense.
These young cadets at Fishburne Military School explain why a high school with a military emphasis was the right choice for them.
From Admiral Farragut Academy's web site:
"Every year, the officer in charge of our Naval Science Program has the authority each year to make the following senior nominations:
Normally, to receive an offer of appointment to the Naval (or other military) Academy, an applicant must obtain a nomination from an official source such as a U.S. Representative, two U.S. Senators and the Vice President of the United States, who are only permitted to nominate a few students each year from their entire state. Thus, the chance to be nominated by our officer in charge--from only a pool of other qualified Admiral Farragut students--is an outstanding advantage for those students interested in pursuing a military college career."
The graduates of the 42 military schools in the U.S. matriculate to colleges and universities at home and abroad. Academic training and good results are primary objectives of military schools. Always have been. Always will be. Most military schools think of themselves as college preparatory schools. That’s how important academic preparation is. Strong leaders need a solid academic training too. Military schools do their very best to provide that.
Take time to explore the advantages of a military school education for your child. Call the admissions offices. Ask questions. Then visit a couple of schools A military school may turn out to be the best option for your child and your requirements for her high school education.