- Helping schools understand the challenges military Families face
- Informing parents about local school policies
- Giving Families information about local schools, graduation requirements, after school programs, youth sponsorship and homeschooling
- Connecting units and schools through partnership initiatives
- Conducting workshops to help parents navigate educational transition and advocate for their children
- Providing an array of resources that benefit military youth and improve school experiences
- When Do I Need a SLO?
Getting ready to move:
- Information about your upcoming duty station and educational options in your new community
- Connection to a youth sponsor who can answer your child’s questions from a youth’s perspective
- Assistance with the steps to prepare for your children’s departure from their current schools
Once you arrive:
- Assistance with school registration and transition
- Help with questions about compliance and solutions regarding the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children
- Two way communication between the school and parent
- Connection with homeschool co-ops or support groups
During your assignment:
- Answers to your questions about schools, homeschooling, special education, scholarships, transitions and more.
- Parent education opportunities about college and career readiness, preparing for transition and the Interstate Compact
To ease the transition, contact your SLO as soon as you get orders.
- Finding a School
Finding a new school and registering your child can be confusing.
We can help.
Our SLOs give you information on local schools so you can find the best fit for you and your family. They can also help you with everything you need to register – and can answer other questions, too. Contact our office and to get more detailed information.
Research-based Characteristics of Quality Schools
Most schools share fundamental characteristics that prepare students for the future. Research shows that the most effective schools are more alike than they are different. Here is some information about what to look for in quality schools:
- Five Key Features of Effective Schools
- Effective Schools Research Base
- What is Effective School Research?
- The United States Department of Education provides detailed information about choosing a school and offers a great number of resources to help you make an informed decision when choosing a school for your child.
Children who live on Fort Sill attend school on post at Freedom Elementary (Pre-K-5th Grade), Central Middle School (6th-8th Grade) or Lawton High School (9th-12th Grade).
Please contact School Liaison Officer.
Kindergarten and First Grade Eligibility/Enrollment
Kindergarten is mandatory in Oklahoma. Children entering Kindergarten must be 5 years of age and students entering First Grade must be 6 years of age on or before September 1 of the current school year. The Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunities for Military Children provides the opportunity for students to be allowed to continue their enrollment at grade level in the receiving state, regardless of age, once that level is validated with an accredited school in the sending state. Keep in mind that not all private or church Pre-K and Kindergarten are accredited with their states.
Fort Sill is located in the Lawton Public School District
Administration +1 (580)357-6900
Student Services +1 (580)353-0171
Special Education Services +1 (580)353-0334
- Youth Sponsorship
Does your child have 101 questions about your next duty station? Let a youth sponsor answer them!
Youth sponsors connect with children before arrival at a new duty station, provide them with information about their new communities and answer questions from a youth perspective – while being guided by adults in the CYS youth program and the schools.
Once you arrive, a youth sponsor will meet your child and can arrange community and school tours.
If you're preparing for a PCS move, contact your SLO today to sign up for a youth sponsor.
Sponsors for your middle school or high school teens are available either through the youth program or school.
Army Youth Sponsorship Program
The Youth Sponsorship Club can help your teen learn about their new community and make new friends. Getting involved quickly helps children and teens fit in and feel less stress associated with their PCS move. All it takes to join the club is a visit to the School Age Center or Youth Center or contact School Liaison Officer.
- Special Education Information
If you have a child with special needs, we can help you find the resources available in your school district. We can also connect you with your local installation’s Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) office.
The Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) is a mandatory enrollment program that works with other military and civilian agencies to provide comprehensive and coordinated community support, housing, educational, medical, and personnel services to Families with special needs. Soldiers on active duty enroll in the program when they have a Family member with a physical, emotional, developmental, or intellectual disorder requiring specialized services so their needs can be considered in the military personnel assignment process.
Respite Care Information: Army One Source: Exceptional Family Member Respite Care Program
Enrollment and Screening Information: US Army Medical Department: Exceptional Family Member Program
- Additional References & Resources for Special Education
Highly mobile children are entitled to an expedited process, including: a) evaluations in 30 days instead of 60 days, b) removed delays due to school district schedules for Families moving during incomplete screenings, c) continued Extended School Year for students moving in the summer. The United State Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services outlines these requirements for State Directors of Special Education.
The Center for Parent Information and Resources offers parent education, acronyms, tools, webinars and a directory of local Parent and Information Training Centers to appropriately advocate for their children, proactively supporting personal accountability. Funded by OSEP.
Military OneSource has a range of resources in caring for a family member with special needs: education, health care, legal, financial, points of contact (EFMP, School Liaisons, etc.)
Military Community & Family Policy-Office of Special Needs provides directory of age-specific resources and States at a Glance for state education special education resources and parent resources.
DirectSTEP provides no-cost, Army sponsored online training for educators and parents on a host of special education topics such as understanding federal requirements, best practices for behavior management, IDEA eligibility, IEPs and more. Through the eCourses parents and educators learn how to apply education laws in order to obtain positive outcomes associated with critical education issues. Access the course listing and registration page through the links below.
- Home School
Home schooling has become mainstream and widely-used. We offer resources and information to help you provide quality home-based education.
Home School Legal Defense Association provides information on home school law, and general support and information about homeschooling.
Oklahoma State Department of Education Home School page
Homeschooling in Oklahoma
- Transition Support
We understand that military transitions for children include much more than school plans and enrollment. We have a number of resources to help make your move as easy as possible for the kids, including:
Military Kids Connect provides online age-appropriate resources to help parents, teachers and children cope with the unique challenges of military life.
The Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children (MIC3) addresses key transition issues military Families experience, including enrollment, placement, attendance, eligibility and graduation. All 50 states have signed the compact and are in varying stages of implementation and/or compliance. The compact applies to children of Active Duty service members, National Guard and Reserve members on active duty orders and members or veterans who are medically discharged or retired within past year.
If you feel that you have an issue that the Compact can help address talk with your SLO. The SLO is able to assist by connecting with both the sending and receiving school to assist in resolving the issue. If it is not possible to resolve the issue locally, the SLO will help you work with the state commission, and if needed, the national office.
- Post - Secondary Support
Our support doesn’t end with elementary education. If you have children preparing for academic life after high school, we can help you find information about testing opportunities, scholarships and military-specific resources that can help you plan.
The US Department of Veteran’s Affairs provides information about Military-Specific and Government Academic Support G.I. Bill
The Transferability of Educational Benefits for the Post 9/11 GI Bill are very specific. The Defense Manpower Data Center, through MilConnect will guide you through the transfer process and your eligibility to do so. Speak with an Education Counselor prior to making this election in order to ensure you understand the benefit.
In-State Tuition Programs for Military: Service-members, active duty for a period of more than 30 days and their dependents are eligible to receive in-state tuition at many public colleges and universities in the state where they reside or are permanently stationed. An enrolled dependent may pay in-state tuition as long as he or she remains continuously enrolled at the institution, even if the service-member is reassigned outside of the state. Regulations outlined in the Higher Education Opportunity Act, 2008 (P.L 110 - 135) and the Higher Education Act of 1965 (pdf) apply.
Earn College Credit while still in High School
High school Juniors and Seniors (or home schooled students age 16/17) who meet minimum eligibility requirements are eligible for concurrent enrollment in college courses while still in High School (up to 6 hours per semester). All public higher education institutions offer tuition waiver scholarships for Seniors. Some (Including Cameron University) also offer tuition waiver scholarships for Juniors as well, which means that a student could receive up to 36 hours tuition free.
Area School Counselors have detailed information and must approve concurrent enrollment.
Eligibility begins the summer after 10th grade, with the required GPA and ACT/SAT score.
Students are eligible for a tuition waiver of up to 6 hours per semester, however the student is still required to pay the fees (generally $350-$400 for 6 hours)
ACT and SAT Testing
National ACT and SAT testing dates are listed below. Students who are unable to test on one of the national ACT testing dates may take the Residual ACT test by appointment at the college or university they plan to attend. All 11th grade public school students have the opportunity to take the ACT test one time at no cost. The test is administered at their high school.
For a list of national testing dates, consult these websites:
Here are some additional web resources to assist you with your child’s education:
Tutor.com for U.S. Military Families makes live tutors available online 24/7 to help with more than 40 core subjects and standardized test preparation.
Homework Support: Army Child Youth & School Services provides Homework Labs in before/after school programs for elementary students at the School Age Center, and for middle and high school students at the Youth Center.
A personalized learning resource for all ages Khan Academy offers practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard that empower learners to study at their own pace in and outside of the classroom. We tackle math, science, computer programming, history, art history, economics, SAT and more.
School Support Services include information about other programs you can use for support and resilience-related issues.
Military Family Life Counselors (MFLCs) are available to meet in-person on or off the military installation. The free nonmedical sessions are anonymous and may occur in individual, couple, family or group settings. Child Behavioral Specialists are located on the installation in Child, Youth and School Services programs, and in highly impacted schools located on and off the installation.
Military OneSource has access to free nonmedical counseling that’s anonymous and available online, on the phone or in person. Twelve free sessions may occur in individual, couple, family or group settings.
Ready and Resilient Workshops for youth and educators are offered through the SLO and Youth Center programs. These workshops provide educators and students with the same tools Soldiers receive through their Ready and Resilient training. As Master Resilience Trainers SLOs strive to develop a common language around resilience for educators, youth and their parents.
For information on how to attend a class contact your local SLO.
College and Career Readiness Resources:
College and career readiness includes the content knowledge, skills and habits that students must have to be successful in postsecondary education. It also includes training that leads to a sustaining career. A student who is ready for college and career can qualify for and succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing college courses without needing remedial or developmental coursework. These links have tools that will help you plan for your child’s college and career readiness:
Army Educational Outreach Program (AEOP) provides STEM opportunities for military connected youth. The website provides information about AEOP programs available to youth, scholarship opportunities, news, and ways to get involved.
Military.com Scholarship Finder Military.com provides a search engine to help you find money for your child’s higher education needs. Search over 1000 scholarships intended for military youth. They also have a Military Scholarship Handbook.
School Support Services Scholarship Database Listing of crowd sourced scholarships for military connected youth. Scholarships are listed in alphabetical order and provide information on deadlines and qualifications.
Provides a description of federal student aid programs from the U.S. Dept. of Education and how to apply for them.
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Apply for federally funded financial assistance for education beyond high school.
Get Ready for College - College Planning, Financial Aid
- Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Unique Military Child Identifier? Numerous states have enacted a voluntary report-only self-identification of military children within their public school systems. This data collection would allow monitoring of critical elements such as academic progress and proficiency, special and advanced program participation, mobility and dropout rates. Requirements and method of collection vary from state to state.
Many local school districts across the United States include within their boundaries parcels of land that are owned by the Federal Government. They must provide a quality education to the children living on the Indian and other Federal lands while sometimes operating with less local revenue than is available to other school districts, because the Federal property is exempt from local property taxes.
Congress has provided financial assistance to these local school districts through the Impact Aid Program. Each year Military members and Federal employees complete a Survey Form. The amount of Impact Aid – or federal assistance –received is determined by the number of eligible parents/guardians who complete the survey form. It partially compensates school districts affected by federal activity for local tax losses resulting from tax-free federal installations.
Impact Aid Fact Sheet (we will provide a hand out to link to)
Impact Aid Website
At overseas/international locations where there is not a Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) school, NDSP supports a variety of options for your children, ranging from public or private schools to homeschool programs. NDSP has a team of education specialists who are available to provide transition and educational support and coordination for all students, including those with special needs. Sponsors are encouraged contact the NDSP as soon as possible for specific school information.
I plan to live on Fort Sill. Where will my child attend school?
Families who live on Fort Sill are in the Freedom Elementary, Central Middle School and Lawton High School transportation districts. Intra-district transfers (to other LPS schools) are an option for those who desire/need different courses. Keep in mind that transfers generally impact athletic eligibility.
We plan to live off-post. Can my child attend Freedom Elementary?
For any transfer, the receiving school must accommodate all of the students who reside within that school’s transportation district before considering transfers. Children whose parent(s) work on Fort Sill and utilize CYSS before/after school care (Centers or Family Child Care) are more likely to receive favorable consideration for transfers. However, using CYS Before/After Care does not guarantee a transfer.
Where will my child go to school?
There are 17 public and 4 private schools of varying size that serve Fort Sill Families. Check school web sites for more information when choosing a school district. If you have children who need before/after school care, check on the availability in your area prior to selecting housing in a school district without child care that may not meet your needs. In the areas outside Lawton, most child care does not open early enough to accommodate morning PT.
When do I enroll my child in school?
If you arrive during the summer, check your school's website for enrollment information.
Contact School Liaison Officer for additional information.
What documents do I need to enroll my child in school?
- Official state issued birth certificate
- Immunization record **
- Proof of residence (contract from on-post housing, rental contract, utility bill in parents’ name, etc.)
- Student’s social security card
Previous School information needed:
- Address, phone number and fax number of most recent school attended
- Withdrawal form from most recent school attended (only required during the active school calendar)
- IEP or 504 Plan if student requires special accommodations (placement may change upon assessment of special needs)
** for a complete list of Oklahoma immunization requirements, visit: https://www.ok.gov/health2/documents/IMM_Parents_School_Vaccines_Requirements_OK_English.pdf
When is my child eligible to attend elementary school?
- Pre-Kindergarten – child must be 4 prior to September 1 (Pre-K is optional)
- Kindergarten – child must be 5 prior to September 1 (Kindergarten is mandatory)
- First Grade – child must be 6 prior to September 1
Where will my child attend school?
Students who live on Fort Sill attend Freedom Elementary, Central Middle School and Lawton High. Students who live off-post attend the elementary, middle or high school located in their transportation district. For other school districts, if the home is near the edge of the district, call the County Assessor’s Office (listed below) to determine school district for that home. Keep in mind that in rural areas that it is not uncommon to have irregular school district boundaries. If you have a particular neighborhood school or school district in mind, make every effort to secure housing in that transportation area.
Oklahoma High School Graduation Requirements
Oklahoma requires a total of 23 Credits for graduation
Requirement (grades 9-12)
4 units (English I, II, III, IV or other English course approved for college admission)
3 units at Algebra I level or above (Hight school math courses taken prior to 9th grade do not count toward these units)
3 units (Biology, Chemistry, Physics or other Lab Science course approved to meet college admission requirements)
3 units (US History, 1/2 unit US Government, 1/2 unit Oklahoma History, + 1 unit approved to meet college admission requirements)
Foreign Lang. Technology
2 units (2 units of the SAME foreign/non-English Language or 2 years of Computer Technology)
1 unit (Music, Art, Drama or Speech)
At least 7 units including Personal Financial Literacy and CPR/AED Instruction
What is the “best” school?
The school districts in the Fort Sill area range from very small (200 total students) to very large (15,000 total students). The “best” school is the one that meets a student’s academic, extracurricular and social needs. There is no “perfect” school. All schools have strengths and challenges. It is important to do your research (based on facts, not hearsay) and choose based on the total package.
If you need some extra help during school closure time, Tutor.com has military Families covered! Go to https://military.tutor.com/home for more information! What other activities are you doing at home? Comment below and tag your friends to share your ideas!
School Support Services provides Army school-aged youth with educational opportunities, resources and information necessary to achieve academic success. A branch of Child & Youth Services (CYS), School Support Services features School Liaison Officers (SLOs), who help schools, installations and Families work together for student achievement.
SLOs are your best support in the area of education, schools and military transitions. SLOs are knowledgeable in current education news and policies. They act as the conduit between the school community – including local public school districts, private schools and home school Families – and the installation.
How do they do it? By
Click on the video below to find out even more about School Liaison Officers (SLO). The Facebook Live event was presented by Military OneSource featuring a panel of School Liaison experts from each Service, explaining the benefits of the School Liaison program!