GENERAL INFORMATION REGARDING THE INTERSTATE COMPACT
The average military student will transition into six to nine different school systems over the course of his/her life between kindergarten and 12th grade. While transitioning into a new school can be stressful for any child, factors such as moving to a new state or country and/or having a parent deployed add to the level of stress a student may experience. As of August 1, 2009, Maryland, along with 24 other states, joined the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children to ensure that children of military families enroll in our public schools quickly and efficiently, and have every opportunity to participate in the programs and activities their new school has to offer. (For a current list of states, click here.)
The Interstate Compact establishes an independent operating authority, the Interstate Commission, which is positioned to identify and address key education issues encountered by military families: eligibility, enrollment, placement, and graduation. The compact objective is to promote flexibility and cooperation between and among states to help remove barriers to educational success that sometimes emerge with frequent moves due to military reassignment and/or deployment. The Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) will work with the Interstate Commission, as well as with local school systems, to further develop guidelines and materials for school administrators and staff that will inform the implementation of the Interstate Compact.
Maryland has many military installations within our borders, and will be a primary recipient of military families relocated due to Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC). As a transfer-friendly state, Maryland has many policies or practices in place that serve to ease the transition of any student into our public schools, and address most of the Interstate Compact issues. However, the Interstate Compact does include additional guidelines aimed at expediting children of military families’ enrollment and placement which may deviate from state or local policy. Any law of Maryland that conflicts with the terms of the Interstate Compact is, by law of Maryland, considered "superseded to the extent of the conflict." 2009 Session Laws ch. 501.
Questions about this document or the Interstate Compact should be directed to Mary Gable, Assistant State Superintendent and BRAC liaison for MSDE, at 410-767-0473 or firstname.lastname@example.org.