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(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) offered an amendment at the HELP Committee markup of the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 to help ensure that military-connected children are succeeding in school. In remarks prior to the vote, Murray highlighted that military-connected children face unique challenges in school, yet there is currently no consistent school-based data on the academic well-being of these students. Murray’s amendment would require reporting on where military-connected children are attending school and how they’re performing in the classroom. Murray’s amendment passed the HELP Committee by a vote of 15-7.

Full text of Senator Murray’s remarks prior to the vote:

“Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

“Military-connected children face unique challenges in school. Because of the heroic work their parents do, they often move to different towns and states, they have to adjust to new schools, and perhaps most difficult, they have to deal with the stress of their parents deploying and the sometimes equally difficult reintegration when they come home.

“My amendment would take the first step to ensure we have the information we need to make sure our education laws are working to help these children succeed in school.

“ESEA already requires reporting on some student populations. But we don’t examine the specific needs of students from military families.

“This amendment would create a report-only subgroup for military-connected children. That way, we will have precise data on where they attend school and how they are doing in the classroom. 

“I want to be clear: the data collected would only be used to give us the information we need to help schools and their students succeed. 

“I know all of us care deeply about our service members and their families. This amendment will help us get to work to make sure these students can succeed. 

“This amendment is supported by groups like the Military Child Education Coalition and the National Military Family Association to name just a few. 

“So I urge my colleagues to support this amendment.”