Army JROTC has a long and proud tradition of service to the nation through the betterment of its youth. Founded as part of the National Defense Act of 1916, subsequent legislation opened the program to other services, made it an integral part of the school’s curriculum, and recognized JROTC instructors as qualified Instructors in “leadership, wellness and fitness, civics, and other courses related to the content of the program.” Public and private educational institutions apply for JROTC units and commit to share costs and meet standards. A minimum of 100 cadets in grades 9 – 12 organized into a chain of command make up a JROTC unit. Two instructors, normally consisting of one retired officer (the Senior Army Instructor, or SAI) and one noncommissioned officer (the Army Instructor or AI) teach a rigorous curriculum and supervise cadets in all their activities. The U.S. Army reimburses schools for a percentage of instructor pay and provide uniforms, equipment, and an accredited and rigorous curriculum. Schools in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, Japan, Korea and Germany currently host over 1,700 JROTC units, employ approximately 4,000 instructors and enroll over 300,000 cadets. JROTC is not a recruitment program for the military, incurs no military obligation, and instructors do not apply any pressure toward military service. Cadets who choose to enlist or enter Senior ROTC may, however, receive benefits through higher rank or advancement.
Mission, Vision, and Goals…and Results
The focus of Army JROTC is reflected in its mission, “To motivate young people to be better citizens”. JROTC accomplishes the mission by providing exceptional educational opportunities and lifelong skills to America’s youth. The curriculum helps cadets develop life-long leadership and decision making skills. The curriculum supports the school’s mission and mandates by integrating technology, linking content to state standards, integrating reading and writing, and providing character and financial education. The benefits of this curriculum are not limited to JROTC cadets. In a recent evaluation that led to accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the quality assurance review team noted, “… [JROTC] serves to reinforce the competencies taught in the other academic subjects in which students are enrolled”.
Instructors – Mentors, Leaders, Coaches
JROTC instructors have completed at least 20 years of military service and set an outstanding example of personal behavior, professional etiquette, and appearance for cadets, colleagues, and the community. They perform full time as teachers and after school they are the equivalent of coaches whose teams are always in season. Their major responsibilities are to continuously improve instruction, provide a safe and supportive environment, mentor, coach, and practice strategies to motivate cadets to learn and succeed in high school and in life. Instructors stay abreast of new and alternative instructional and motivational techniques, use the latest technology and interactive multi-media available, and provide an awareness of world cultures and history, as well as possible careers. They reinforce the curriculum through service learning and co-curricular activities after school and on weekends.
Cadets – The Future
JROTC cadets set the example by being active in the community as well as the school. They exemplify a work ethic and behavioral standard that increases the expectations of all. They serve as role models to the other students in the school. They are not just talking about achievement, service to the community, and filling leadership roles – they are doing it. Cadets know how to set goals as well as how to develop and follow a plan to reach them. They are willing to help others do the same. They tutor, build houses, and work in middle and elementary schools to assist younger students to learn about character and team building and to provide an example for them to emulate. They participate in academic, marksmanship, drill, orienteering, physical fitness, and leadership competitions as well as summer camps. And, when they qualify, they travel to participate in competitions at higher levels. Instructors and cadets visibly exemplify pride, patriotism, high standards, and increased expectations.
A proven track record, with positive outcomes in public education, is generating great interest in the Army JROTC program from all sectors of society. Army JROTC is far more than “marching around the football field” and posting the colors at a ceremony. It is a tremendous, all inclusive program for students of all abilities and backgrounds.
JROTC is a large, popular, 21st Century Learning Program that:
• Hails a world class curriculum that employs student-centered learning and enhances program popularity
• Teaches citizenship and leadership roles and subjects that align to national and state standards
• Integrates current instructional and technology strategies and maximizes award winning multi-media curriculum
• Offers college credit to cadets and instructors
• Hosts quality competitions to motivate cadets
• Demonstrates the ultimate model of diversity
AND Needs continued support at the highest levels to maintain its place in the arena of public education.
For additional Information please visit the JROTC website, www.usarmyjrotc.com