National Advocate for Purple Star Schools

MCEC is the nation’s most complete resource for states seeking to start a Purple Star School program. We stand ready to offer guidance and serve in a consultative role every step of the way.

About

MCEC is the national advocate for Purple Star Schools, a program that supports military-connected children as they relocate to new schools due to a parent’s change in duty station. 

Military children move every two to three years. The Purple Star School program is designed to help schools respond to the educational and social-emotional challenges military-connected children face during their transition to a new school and keep them on track to be college, workforce, and life-ready. Military-connected refers to children of service members on active duty, and in the National Guard and Reserves. 

MCEC is the nation’s most complete resource for states seeking to start a Purple Star School program. We stand ready to offer guidance and serve in a consultative role every step of the way. As of June 5, 2024, 40 states have received Purple Star School designation, and six states have proposed/pending legislation:

To better understand the landscape around and impact of the Purple Star program, MCEC partnered with the Center for Public Research and Leadership at Columbia University (CPRL) in 2020 to conduct a study of the program across four states. In 2021, CPRL and MCEC released a summary report of findings related to the landscape of the program, including recommendations for improvements at the school, district, and state levels. 

Read the original report here:

A new 2022 report builds on the findings from the 2021 summary and provides additional detail on how the program has been implemented over time. It specifically focuses on how the program has evolved and how stakeholders have worked to ensure rigor and sustainability.  

Drawing on research across six focus states, this report reviews the benefits of, and challenges associated with program requirements, provides insights on program administration at various levels, discusses the effects of COVID-19 on PSS, and provides recommendations at the state, district, and school levels to improve and expand the initiative. 

Read the 2022 Purple Star Research Reports here:

Once your state begins a program, we also offer support to individual schools seeking designation as a Purple Star School. 

Learn more about Purple Star Schools and how your state can begin the process below. And if you have any questions, please contact our Military Student Consultants at MSC@MilitaryChild.org.

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