As soon as we heard about this story today, we knew we had to share this with our MilitaryOneClick community. Brianna Mikeska, a high school senior in Virginia, is a star student, living a world away from her parents who are currently stationed in Japan. Brianna had attended this high school during her freshman, sophomore and junior year and moved back during her senior year to obtain an Advanced Studies Diploma. This educational opportunity is something she would not be able to earn if she was living with her family in Japan. She had been part of this high schools cheerleading squad before they moved, and then she made the team again when she moved back to live with a host family. While practicing with the team she was called into the school office to inform her that she could no longer be on the team. The school determined that she did not go through an “undue hardship” while moving to Japan due to her father’s deployment, therefore she did not qualify to participate on the team.
I spoke via email with Mrs. Mikeska tonight, who is stationed with her husband and family in Japan. As you can imagine she is saddened and deeply upset by this situation and she is looking for help from all families, both military and non-military to “sign the petition.” This petition will be utilized during Brianna’s appeal to allow her to participate in extra-curricular activities.
As a mom – I can’t imagine the hardship they are all going through right now and not being able to just give her a hug to help her through this. Brianna’s family is living in Japan while her father is serving our country and she makes the excruciating decision to live thousands of miles away from them to secure a better education – and this is not considered a hardship? I am appalled at the Virginia High School League who rendered this decision!
An organization called the Military Interstate Compact Commission has been established to help our military children in this situation. This is a quote from the home page of the MICC; ” The average military student faces transition challenges more than twice during high school and most military children will attend six to nine different school systems in their lives from kindergarten to 12th grade. The Compact therefore seeks to make transition easier for the children of military families so that they are afforded the same opportunities for educational success as other children and are not penalized or delayed in achieving their educational goals.” Virginia HAS SIGNED and AGREED to the Military Interstate Compact Commission to help military children. As part of this agreement it is stated:
What Are Some of the Specific Educational Issues that the Compact Covers?
Kindergarten & First Grade Entrance Age
Placement & Attendance
Course & Educational Program Placement
Special Education Services
Absence Related to Deployment Activities
Eligibility for Student Enrollment
Eligibility for Extracurricular Participation
Waiving courses required for graduation if similar course work has been completed
Flexibility in accepting state exit or end-of-course exams, national achievement tests, or alternative testing in lieu of testing requirements for graduation in the receiving state
Allowing a student to receive a diploma from the sending school instead of the receiving school
So let’s show the power of the MilitaryOneClick community and help get this changed for Brianna and all of the military children who experience “hardships” every day while their parent(s) serve in the military.
PLEASE Sign the Petition now to show your support. Also – at the bottom of this page, please leave a note of encouragement for the Mikeska family to know they are not fighting this battle alone. We will be in contact with Mrs. Mikeska and make sure she receives your comments. There are buttons at the bottom of the page to easily share this page/link with your family and friends – together we can help change this.
LINK FOR Petition: http://www.change.org/petitions/allow-a-military-child-to-participate-in-extra-curricular-activities?utm_campaign=friend_inviter_modal&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=share_petition&utm_term=30090186own
Link for Information Regarding the Military Compact Commission: http://mic3.net/index.aspx
If you would like to contact the representatives diretly in Virgnia please click on this link for the Military Interstate Compact Commission for Virginia: http://mic3.net/pages/contact/Map/virginia.aspx
Here is the full story and video link from WVEC Virginia Beach News – we applaud them for covering this important issue.
by David Ham, 13News
Posted on October 3, 2012 at 6:33 PM
Updated today at 6:33 PM
She’s been on the squad her freshman, sophomore and junior years, but she’s been told by the Virginia High School League that she is ineligible this year because she moved to Japan midway through her junior year and then came back.