PLATINUM2023

Military Child Education Coalition

aka MCEC   |   Harker Heights, TX   |  http://www.militarychild.org

Mission

Our Vision: Every military-connected child is college, workforce, and life-ready. Our Mission: To support all military-connected children by educating, advocating, and collaborating to resolve education challenges associated with the military lifestyle. Our Goals: The enduring strategic goals that the Military Child Education Coalition seeks are: - Military-connected children's academic, social and emotional needs are recognized, supported and appropriate responses provided. - Parents, and other supporting adults, are empowered with the knowledge to ensure military-connected children are college, workforce and life ready. - A strong community of partners is committed to support an environment where military-connected children thrive.

Ruling year info

1999

President and Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Rebecca I. Porter Ph.D.

Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

COL (Ret) Tim Farrell

Main address

909 Mountain Lion Circle

Harker Heights, TX 76548 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

74-2889416

NTEE code info

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Military/Veterans' Organizations (W30)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2023, 2022 and 2021.
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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Many military-connected children live with perpetual challenges presented by frequent moves, parental and sibling deployments, and a host of life transitions that impact their education. Geographic mobility and transition across school systems is a common experience of school-age military students; on average, the military family changes residences every two to three years. Highly mobile students can lag behind their peers by as much as the equivalent of a full school year (Kerbow, 2003). Frequent school moves and poor connections to schools have been linked to lower grades and test scores, poor attendance and higher dropout rates, an increased risk of failing or repeating a grade, adjustment problems, and an increased probability of engaging in risky behaviors. The Education of the Military Child: 21st Century (EMC-21) study determined that if new students assimilated within the first two weeks of school, they were more likely to be successful academically, socially and emotionally.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Frances Hesselbein Student Leadership Program

Since 2007, The Frances Hesselbein Student Leadership Program (FHSLP) has selected over 160 exemplary high school sophomores and juniors actively participating in their campus' Student 2 Student programs to attend specialized leadership training. The MCEC offers two trainings during each school year. The Fall FHSLP is conducted at the United States Military Academy at West Point and the Spring FHSLP is hosted at the United States Air Force Academy. FHSLP objectives focus on: leadership, team building, citizenship, resiliency, strong ethical practices, and academic excellence.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents

MCEC Student 2 Student (S2S) is a unique student-led, school-managed program that confronts the challenges military-connected students encounter as they transition from school to school. The goal of S2S is to make military-connected and all transitioning students feel welcomed and accepted. The S2S program at the high, middle and elementary school levels provides relevant training to enable students to navigate the smoothest transition possible with the core value of 100% Acceptance.

At the high and middle school levels, a team of student volunteers, supervised by school personnel, supports inbound and outbound transitioning students in four subject areas: Finding the Way, Relationships, Service, Academics and Leadership. At the elementary school level, S2S is delivered through a faculty-led model that identifies transitional student needs toward the creation of a customized campus plan. A team of student volunteers under faculty-direction supports inbound and outbound students with the core value of 100% Acceptance.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Tell Me a Story (TMAS) is an early literacy initiative that empowers military children by using literature and their own stories in a way that fosters skills for resilience,  strong peer and parent connections, a sense of pride and accomplishment, and a caring community.

 Stories have the capacity to open discussion on potentially difficult topics such as:

Family separation or deployment,

Homecoming,

Fear of moving to a new location,

Grief,

Crisis, and

Fitting-in or being different

Each Tell Me A Story event features a selected book.  Parents and children sit together to hear the story, then break into small groups for a discussion with a trained facilitator.  Every family receives a copy of the featured book.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Infants and toddlers

The Parent to Parent program provides informative and interactive workshops to groups and organizations in communities where military-connected families reside. The length of workshops is usually between twenty minutes and an hour. They can be tailored to meet the group's needs. Participants receive high quality resources and materials that will assist them in their role as their child's best advocate. Workshops are available for parents with children of varying age levels including the following: parents of young children; parents with elementary school age children; parents of middle and high school students; and parents of any age child. Parent to Parent teams are generally located in communities near military installations. The team members are military spouses and/or veterans who have personal expertise, backed by research. They share practical ideas, proven techniques, and solid resources to support the military parents/guardians of transitioning school-age children.

Due to the restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, MCEC began delivering workshops virtually via Facebook and other platforms. As communities are ready to resume in-person training, Parent to Parent teams will resume face-to-face delivery.

In 2020, MCEC added the Parent to Parent team en Espanol to serve Spanish-speaking families with workshops delivered in Spanish and resources that have been translated into Spanish. Because all workshops are delivered virtually, they are accessible to military parents no matter where they are located in the world.

Population(s) Served
Parents
Children and youth

The Military Student Transition Consultant (MSTC) is a full-time, highly specialized education professional embedded within the school district dedicated to supporting military-connected students. The MSTC works directly with children, parents, and school personnel on a daily basis. The MSTC serves as an expert "navigator” and advocate for military-connected students and their families to decrease turbulence in family life, build resiliency in students to overcome the unique challenges they face and meet their academic goals. The MSTC works hand in hand with school, installation and community resources.

The Military Student Transition Consultant Affiliate (MSTCA) is employed by the local education agency (school or district) and assigned to a campus supporting military-connected students. The MSTC works directly with children, parents, and school personnel on a daily basis. The MSTC serves as an expert "navigator” and advocate for military-connected students and their families to decrease turbulence in family life, build resiliency in students to overcome the unique challenges they face and meet their academic goals. The MSTC works hand in hand with school, installation and community resources.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Parents

The Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC) believes it is important for professionals to know how to identify and respond to the complex needs of military-connected children and youth. MCEC trains professionals across disciplines such as education, healthcare, childcare and business, along with parents and caregivers, to address the unique challenges facing military-connected children. All training is grounded in research and presented by highly skilled instructors. The MCEC has been approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) and offers Continuing Education Units and Graduate Credit options. Non-degreed graduate credit is available for select courses through Texas A&M University.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Highly specialized education professionals operate an internationally accessible call center to provide concierge-like responses to military-connected students, their families, educators, community members, & installation representatives who need information, direction and/or guidance, no matter where they are located in the world. The call center operators have over ten years of experience between them and are especially valuable for military families who are moving from installation to installation where there are no Military Student Transition Consultants/Affiliates or military liaisons available to troubleshoot the challenges they are facing.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Because military-connected families are in every zip code and may not be able to attend a face-to-face
parent education workshop, MCEC also offers parent webinars. These webinars are live presentations of our most impactful workshops and include access to downloadable resources and discussion with MCEC Master Parent Educators and other subject matter experts in topics of interest for parents of all aged children.

Parent to Parent webinars are developed on a range of topics as a resource for military and veteran-connected parents. If participants cannot attend live sessions, the recordings are available instantly
online. Free and open to everyone, topics include a wide variety of subject matter especially relevant to the challenges the military lifestyle that can present to military-connected children and their families. As a dynamic resource, webinars and podcasts covering timely and relevant topics are being produced and added to the MCEC website regularly.

MCEC webinars and podcasts include topics of interest to parents of all age ranges, from pre-kindergarten through post-secondary level education. The goal of our parent webinars and podcasts is to provide resource rich programming that is informed by the latest research to enable today’s military-connected parent to be fully equipped in all aspects of their child(ren)’s educational journey. MCEC podcasts cover an array of informative and important topics with guests from all walks of life.

Population(s) Served

The MCEC National Training Seminar (NTS), currently in its 23rd year, offers a unique training experience for education professionals, military service representatives, military parents & high school students who attend. NTS provides a unique opportunity for attendees to engage with senior military, corporate, education & thought leaders while obtaining in-depth coverage of current issues relevant to military-connected children. This year’s theme, “College-, Work-, & Life-Ready: Embracing the Future for #MILKIDS,” will be underscored by sessions & presentations that will emphasize moving beyond entry-level awareness & offer innovative ideas & critical information relevant to serving the military-connected child. In light of pandemic-related safety concerns, the 2021 NTS will be conducted as a virtual event & give us the opportunity to offer this invaluable experience free of charge. A virtual NTS will also enable participants from all over the world to attend. We’ve contracted with Attendify as our host platform; registration will open 16 March 2021. Our goal is 2000+ active participants.

Population(s) Served
Parents
Parents

SchoolQuest is an online, interactive tool specially designed to support highly mobile military families and students. SchoolQuest assists parents in preparing and making the best choices for their student(s) before, during and after a move to increase the chances of academic success and social well-being. As a dynamic and evolving tool, SchoolQuest currently includes the following components:
• StudentQuest Academic Tracker to monitor and plan students' academic career progress from 6th to 12th grade, plus a K-5/Primary option so that parents can begin to build the records for their younger children, utilize the school search and notes capabilities, and access the other features that are not specific to MS/HS students. Kindergarten and early childhood education information is included in each state’s transition resource for parents.
• Student Profile enables the creation of customized student profiles that automatically compile important details and deadlines for quick views and access.
• Reminders & Notifications for important deadlines so that parents can be notified about them automatically in time to act.
• Personalized Checklists helps parents compile time-bound, student-specific information into accessible lists.
• School Search Capabilities: The GreatSchools search function researches and aggregates schools in the next community where you PCS.
• Relocation Information provides essential information relative to upcoming relocations, i.e. new state enrollment, testing, registration, etc.
• Scholarship search capability provides direct access linkage to the most respected scholarship search engines from within the platform, allowing for ease in creation of student notes about scholarships and deadlines.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Children and youth
Children and youth
Adults
Family relationships

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

Association of Fundraising Professionals - Member 2018

Points of Light Foundation 2018

Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development 2020

Association of the United States Army 2020

The College Board 2020

Society for Human Resource Management 2020

Phi Delta Kappa 2020

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of training workshops

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Students & sponsors (Student 2 Student program); parents (Parent to Parent workshops); parents & children ("Tell Me A Story" events), & educators/youth serving professionals, professional development.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC) mission is to support all military-connected children by educating, advocating, and collaborating to resolve education challenges associated with the military lifestyle. The organization's Strategic Plan is reviewed annually by the MCEC executive leadership and the MCEC Board of Directors and is adjusted to account for progress made and the dynamic environment in which the MCEC operates. The Strategic Plan informs MCEC's annual Operational Plan for each upcoming business year.
MCEC Strategies in Advancing Our Mission: Advocate – Educate – Collaborate.

Advocate.
• Champion, in every way possible, our core constituency that is children and youth whose parents are serving or have served in our nation's military.
• Help children who currently are or may in the future be affected by high mobility, transitions, and family separations, thrive in good and challenging times.
• Advocate for children with national, state, and local policy leaders to ensure their education needs are recognized and appropriate support is provided.
Educate.
• Educate and empower parents to be their child's first and best advocate.
• Train volunteers, youth-serving professionals, and educators to respond to the complex needs of children whose parents serve in our armed forces or are veterans.
• Teach military and civilian students, through a 100% acceptance model, to recognize their own strengths, support their peers, and thrive socially, emotionally, and academically.
• Develop and provide an array of research-informed tools, support systems, and resources to meet the dynamic needs of children.
Collaborate.
• Collaborate with foundations, corporate partners, and other stakeholders of common interest, to create and expand innovative ways to support military and veteran-connected children.
• Lead a coalition of partners… for the sake of the child.

MCEC Goals for Next 3 Years for Supporting our Strategies, Mission and Vision:
1) Military-connected children's academic, social and emotional needs are recognized, supported and appropriate responses provided.
2) Parents, and other supporting adults, are empowered with the knowledge to ensure military-connected children are college, workforce and life ready.
3) A strong community of partners is committed to support an environment where military-connected children thrive.

Goal #1: Military-connected children's academic, social and emotional needs are recognized, supported and appropriate responses provided.

Goal #2: Parents, and other supporting adults, are empowered with the knowledge to ensure military-connected children are college, workforce and life ready.

Goal #3: A strong community of partners is committed to support an environment where military-connected children thrive.

The MCEC provides numerous programs, trainings, and workshops targeted at helping to ensure military-connected children receive inclusive, quality educational opportunities. Starting with its Board of Directors, comprised of 18 volunteers dedicated to the MCEC mission, the organization structure flows to the President and CEO, Rebecca I. Porter, Ph.D. Dr. Porter has been involved with the organization from its early years and has led the organization since September 2019.

Furthering the organization's ability to stay relevant on the topics most important to military-connected children is the guidance received from its Science Advisory Board and National Advisory Committee. These groups consist of leaders from diverse professional backgrounds and serve as catalysts for new program development, curriculum design, and market expansion.

Internal day-to-day operations are led by Dr. Porter along with Cindy Simerly, VP of Advancement; Amanda Woodyard, VP of Education Services; and Laura Cayton, Interim Chief Operating Officer. With a total annual budget of $6.5 million, the roughly 70 full and part-time staff located throughout the United States and overseas, help to ensure the organization's programs are relevant, current, and research-based. Further supporting MCEC's ability to address the needs of the military-connected child is the fact that over 80% of staff members are closely connected to the military in some way and thus have a first-hand understanding of the challenges military-connected children face.

As a coalition, the MCEC engages with a number of groups that contribute to the organization's success. The spheres of influence with which MCEC collaborate include Private and Corporate Foundations, Government Select Groups, an all-encompassing Education Arena, and Collective Impact Nonprofits. Major Foundations include USAA, H-E-B, The May and Stanley Smith Charitable Trust, Lockheed Martin, Wounded Warrior Project, Bob Woodruff, Sid Richardson, Veterans United Foundation, Boeing, AMBA, BAE, Defense Credit Union, Military Benefit Association, Oshkosh, and Raytheon. Government Select Groups include Military Interstate Child Compact Commission (MIC3), Armed Forces, Secretary of Defense Roundtable, U.S. & State Departments of Education, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Roundtable, Secretary of Defense Military Family Readiness Council, and the Army Roundtable. Those in the Education Arena include K-12 Schools (public/DoDEA/charter and private), Higher Education Institutions, Professional Associations, Policy Centers, Major Research Organizations, and Young Children Organizations. The Collective Impact Nonprofits include Joining Forces.

One recent accomplishment of MCEC is the inclusion of a military student identifier in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESSA). For years, MCEC has been a strong advocate for the inclusion of a military-connected student identifier in state public school data systems, to help us better understand and track the academic progress of students whose parents are Active Duty, National Guard, or Reserve as they move through their K-12 school years. Now, with the inclusion of the identifier in ESSA, military leaders, educators, and elected officials at all levels of government will have data that supports their understanding of how military-connected children are performing in school.

Another recent accomplishment has been the organizational shift from reliance on contracts with Department of Defense (DoD) to a more diversified organization with funding from individual and corporate donations, state contracts, education providers and agencies, and private and public foundation grants. This shift has resulted in a stronger, more agile organization that is better situated to address the requirements of those needing our services.

Over the past 20 years, MCEC has seen a dramatic shift in the way adults learn. The days of formal, multi-day, face-to-face classroom learning is giving way to shorter, more streamlined, virtual training. While the organization still values the traditional instructional method, it is adapting to newer models including online courses, virtual workshops, webinars and podcasts. In the end, the key is people receiving the information in a way that is best suited for their busy lifestyles.

Keeping in mind three guiding principles – that MCEC Reputation is impeccable, that MCEC programs are Relevant, and that the organization generates Revenue so it can deliver its mission – the MCEC continues to refine how we collect, measure, and evaluate impact and reach. We have identified that our current funding capacity allows us to only reach 50% of the estimated 7 million military-connected children, parents, and other supportive adults needing our services. To ensure that these limited resources are used in the most responsible way, the organization and its Board of Directors, review and update the organization strategic plan on an annual basis. This plan includes specific annual objectives for each department.

Our most recent initiative is as the national advocate for Purple Star Schools, an initiative that identifies schools that are informed & equipped to better understand & support military-connected children as they relocate to new schools due to a parent’s change in duty station.

One of our biggest obstacles remains the incorrect belief that military-connected children are not at risk. There is a misconception that because the country is no longer at war, those serving in the military do not still deploy, move from installation to installation, or work in dangerous situations.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, we received good feedback but we would like to have a higher percentage of respondents

Financials

Military Child Education Coalition
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Military Child Education Coalition

Board of directors
as of 04/26/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Admiral (Ret) Cecil Haney

Cortez Dial

Marie Claire Murphy

Textron

Patrick Bingham

DoD Troops to Teachers

Eric Waldo

The Common Application

Anne Haston

Military Spouse

Rene' Carbone Bardorf

Wounded Warrior Project

Lucy Riley Fitch

Robert Ivany

University of St. Thomas in Houston

Cecil D. Haney

Institute for Defense Analysis

Gina Allvin

Military Spouse

Eric Flake

Professor, University of Washington

Jerrod Wheeler

School District Superintendent

Donna Brock

Brock, LMC

Rebecca Cederholm

Military Spouse

Dawne Deskins

Retired Major General, US Air Force & Air National Guard

Alissa Harrison

Hampton University

Susan Moore

Retired, Coast Guard & Coast Guard Spouse

Debra Wada

ED, Uniformed Services Family Health Plan Alliance

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 4/18/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 04/18/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.