NYC Schools make changes to monitor military recruitment of children

(excerpt from) The New York Times
In a Switch, City Tells Schools to Monitor On-Campus Military Recruiting

By JAVIER C. HERNANDEZ / Published: May 19, 2009

Schools will be required to provide military opt-out forms to 9th- and 10th-grade students and to develop a plan to monitor on-campus recruiting by the armed forces, according to new guidelines announced by the city’s Department of Education on Monday night.

The requirements, set to go into effect this fall, follow months of criticism from civil liberties groups, which had pushed to curtail recruiters’ access after school officials decided last year to give military recruiters access to a central database of students’ names, addresses and telephone numbers…

Donna Lieberman, executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, praised the changes, which include a requirement that principals appoint a staff member to oversee a military recruiting plan for each school. Ms. Lieberman said that too often there was not enough oversight of the recruiters and that in some cases they were too aggressive.

“They are not to get unfettered access to the students in the school,” she said. “They have to be regulated.”…

Education officials said it would allow the city to improve its monitoring of students’ use of opt-out forms and tell schools with unusually low numbers to make sure they were being properly distributed.

Last fall, the number of students submitting opt-out forms increased to 45,717, up from 38,227 in 2007 and 22,357 in 2003, according to data released at a meeting of the city’s Panel for Educational Policy on Monday night.

Full story is: here.

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