The internet is abuzz with rumors about Department of Defense Education Activity (DODEA) plans to shut down on-base schools one or more day a week.
The 194 schools, which operate on bases both stateside and OCONUS, are run by teachers and administrators who are civilian Defense Department employees — and subject to the department-wide plan to start furloughs as early as April 26.
That means once the furloughs hit teachers will be out of work one day a week, just like every other DoD civilian employee. The furloughs will impact 94,000 students, according to DoD.
But the rumors on just how DODEA plans to handle those cuts — whether by shutting class one day a week, extending High School to five year to make up for the lost time, ending the school year early, sending work home with students multiple days a week or extending school hours four days a week to make up for the weekly additional day off or many other options — remain nothing more than just rumors.
As of the afternoon of March 19, a plan to address DODEA furloughs had yet to be put in place, Pentagon officials with the Office of the Secretary of Defense told us. Nothing has been officially announced for any post or base. One spouse told us via a thread on this Facebook page that schools on Bragg had announced plans to close one day a week. But when we called the Bragg PAO office, officials there told us that was not true.
“Nothing has been put out from this office,” said Thomas McCollum, the Fort Bragg garrison PAO.
One thing is certain: the furloughs will impact DODEA’s ability to meet education requirements. From this story:
“We’re mindful that we need to protect the education of military children,” Little told reporters at the Pentagon. But teachers and support personnel at DODEA schools will be subject to the furlough. DOD civilian personnel will be furloughed one day a week from April through the end of September, unless Congress intervenes.
As soon as the DODEA furlough system has been announced we’ll update you.
Updated 3/22: Officials announced yesterday the DoD furloughs will be delayed by at least two weeks. That means that the earliest DODEA furloughs would start is early May — not long from summer break. If furloughs happen they won’t impact DODEA for more than a month or so.