• Military enlistment may be denied to cyber-graduates

    Date: 08.31.11 | by Judge Tom.

    More and more students are earning their high school diplomas from virtual schools. There are cyber programs a student can participate in and complete the state’s high school graduation requirements. The certificate earned is referred to as a “nontraditional diploma.”

    However, such a diploma may not be accepted by your local military recruiter. The Pentagon has a policy of not taking more than 10% of recruits with a nontraditional high school diploma. So, if you plan on enlisting once you finish high school, it would be wise to speak with a recruiter first. There is no guaranty that you’ll be in that 10% when it’s time for you to sign up.

    Ryker Packard, age 17, is a case in point.  He graduated from Agora Cyber Charter School in June, 2011. He planned to join the Army and become a diesel mechanic. After telling a recruiter his plans and that he attended a virtual school, the conversation ended. His mother states that the school is fully accredited by the state of Pennsylvania and is considered one of the best. This didn’t make a difference regarding Ryker’s enlistment.

    Expert Infantry (Flickr)

    Check out the story about this case in the Army Times.

    What do you think of a virtual school education as opposed to a traditional brick-and-mortar school? Are there skills and benefits to socializing with other students and teachers that can’t be had online? Are virtual classes designed for certain personalities?

    When you first think about the Armed Forces as a career, regardless of your age, talk with your parents. Even if you’re several years from finishing high school or turning 18, plan a trip to your local recruiter. You’ll receive valuable information, brochures and some trinkets to keep as a reminder of the military as a possible future for you. Better to be early in planning  than discovering as Ryker did that there are rules that won’t be bent or sidestepped so that you can enlist.

    Judge Tom

    This post was written by Judge Tom. Judge Tom is the founder and moderator of AsktheJudge.info. He is a retired juvenile judge and spent 23 years on the bench. He has written several books for lawyers and judges as well as teens and parents including the recently published 'Teen Cyberbullying Investigated' (Free Spirit Publishing). When he's not answering teens' questions, Judge Tom can be found hiking, traveling and reading.

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    2 Comments subscribe to these comments.

    • Tulsa Divorce Attorneys
      Mon, 05 Sep 2011 at 05:39

      A lot of the virtual schools do not meet the accredidation standards.

    • Tulsa Cleaning Services
      Wed, 21 Sep 2011 at 07:10

      I don’t have a problem with cyber graduates so long as the cyber school is accredited.

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