Think of any public high school in America today and it will probably remind you of your high school days, because while fashions may change, roles remain the same. Athletes on the left, goths and nerds on the right, and of course a group of military recruiters hanging out on the field during lunch and free time, looking for new faces to fill those increasingly difficult recruiting quotas.
Unfortunately, my high school didn’t have a lot of military recruiters wandering around like your high school did, especially since we didn’t have the option to enroll as an elective in JROTC, a haven for recruiting eager and potential enlistees.
Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (JROTC) is an elective that is basically like a military lite option for kids interested in this lifestyle.It teaches them discipline, physical fitness and leadership skills that they can master whether they choose military or civilian employment after graduation
However, a investigation It has been revealed that some high schools require freshmen and some sophomores to enroll, leading some parents to worry that their children will be targeted by the draft. The question is, is this necessarily a bad thing?
This photo gives me pure joy ❤️
For 10 years, Zia Ghafoori bravely served as a translator in Afghanistan with US Special Forces.Today, his 15-year-old son proudly wears the JROTC uniform in Charlotte, North Carolina
— Sarah Blake Morgan (@StorytellerSBM) December 4, 2022
Welcome to JROTC!
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JROTC’s mission is to teach teens leadership skills, critical thinking under pressure, civic values, and with the added bonus of potentially recruiting some kids after they’ve tasted the sweet military structure.the plan is funded by the military $400 million a year, but not from the drafting arm of the Defense Department, but from the Department of Education.
While the program is not officially intended to be a recruiting tool for the military, the Army has Report Forty-four percent of new enlisted soldiers in recent years have come from the JROTC program. This program is not available in every high school in the country, but it is currently offered in 3,500 high schools, and as I mentioned before, it is an elective.
However, the New York Times has Find Dozens of schools have made their courses compulsory, some enrolling 75% of students in a grade. The cities with the most significant increases in mandatory enrollment were:
- Los Angeles
- Oklahoma City
So why enforce some military discipline in the lives of teenagers?
what a group of achievements #JROTC Cadet of Francis Lewis #secondary school exist #The Queen #New York City. They consistently lead the nation’s JROTC in academic and training competitions!#LeadershipExcellence pic.twitter.com/drUsrxlN3a
– Amanda Azubuike (@AmandaAzubuike) November 18, 2022
kill two birds in one lesson
It is important to remember that it is not the government that enforces these admissions, but the schools themselves.Pentagon spokeswoman Commander Nicole Schwegman explain said in an interview “Just like we are an all-volunteer army, this should be a volunteer program.”
Some school districts have had to resort to these mandatory admissions to fill the gaps created by staffing issues in other required courses. Schools are having a harder time finding teachers for physical education and health classes, so they’ve been using JROTC to fill vacancies.
While these two subjects may not immediately make you think of the military, the JROTC curriculum is designed to teach a certain level of athletic discipline and proper standards of grooming. In addition, the military subsidizes the salaries of instructors as long as schools maintain a certain level of enrollment.
This has allowed some schools to save money not hiring physical education and health teachers and instead spend that money elsewhere. This seems like a reasonable way to squeeze every dime’s worth, provided they spend it on elementary education needs like math and English teachers rather than on critical race theory and gender studies classes.
I am honored to serve active duty in the United States Army. But forcing students to take military classes is wrong and anti-American. We are not an authoritarian country like Russia.
Any high school that automatically enrolls students in JROTC must immediately repeal this policy. https://t.co/CcZO9dEATg
— Ted Liu (@tedlieu) December 11, 2022
Is there a problem?
Some parents were unhappy with students being forced into JROTC and raised some interesting concerns. For example, some parents see mandatory schooling as a way to indoctrinate children to follow a more militarized thought process rather than become independent free thinkers.
others even associate It’s considered “brainwashing,” as suggested by Jesus Palafox, who was involved in the anti-automation campaign in Chicago. In general, public schools don’t teach teens to be independent free thinkers; I honestly don’t think they ever do.
— Jackie Speier (@RepSpeier) November 16, 2022
“A lot of the hiring for these programs happens in communities that are densely populated by people of color,” Palafox said. Yet Once again, an interesting question arises, is this a bad thing?
Suppose you are a regular visitor to my work. In that case, you know I’m highly critical of the US military and the Pentagon in general. After 20 years of service, I’ve seen the good, the bad, and the ugly of military service, and as you all know, I hope my kids don’t follow in my footsteps.
This particular survey is very interesting because it describes mandatory registration with JROTC as either harmful or something that should be a cause for concern. On the other hand, JROTC promotes many positive qualities.
Studies show that it tends to motivate struggling kids, and it can be a great distraction for kids who might be easy targets for drug use or violence. It has also been shown that JROTC students tend to have better attendance records and graduation rates and fewer disciplinary problems than their peers.
An Air Force officer, fellow mother, and a friend sent me the NYT article with an interesting counter question
“We expose kids to art and music; why is it bad to expose kids to the military?” the writer proposes. “It might make Americans better off.”
and Suicide currently ranks second The leading cause of death in Americans ages 15 to 24, 20% of high school students report suicidal thoughts, and perhaps having to take a class on teamwork and camaraderie will help the next generation feel less lost and isolated. The military definitely has its faults, but one thing you can always count on is feeling as if you belong to something.
Why don’t we want to roll out a program that teaches self-discipline, national pride, and responsibility to America’s next generation of leaders? Maybe we’re too busy making them both victims and activists.
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