Canadian Secondary School Professionals Awareness of the Needs of Military-Connected Children
Military families live a unique lifestyle. Mobility, separation, and risk are three important factors that distinguish military families from their civilian counterparts. Since the start of the Global War on Terror, there has become an increased interest within the United States to understand, prevent, and reduce the effects associated with living in a military family. However, since the military is a microcosm of Canadian society, there has been a lack of research that addresses military-connected children in the Canadian context. Thus, the needs of Canadian military-connected children are not fully understood. The purpose of this qualitative research is to explore how military-connected children and their unique needs are perceived by school professionals in Canadian secondary schools. This research followed a phenomenological research methodology to explore the perceptions of Canadian secondary school professionals of military-connected students and their unique needs. Six participants, selected via snowball sampling, participated in a single in depth, one-on-one interview. The audio data was transcribed verbatim and analyzed using a general inductive approach. The findings suggest that Canadian secondary school professionals are generally aware of the military lifestyle. However, school professionals lack an overall awareness of how secondary schools are currently addressing and supporting the needs of military-connected children. Based on these findings, implications of the study are discussed and recommendations for future work in this field are made. This research contributes to the wider body of research regarding the educational experiences of military-connected children by offering the voices of Canadian secondary school teachers and describing how these school professionals perceive military-connected children and their needs.
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