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Family Matters Blog: Deployed Parents Can Watch Kids Graduate

By Elaine Sanchez
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 9, 2011 – After a decade of war, most military families have grown accustomed to their service member’s absence for significant events due to a heavy pace of deployments. But this year, thanks to technology and some extensive behind-the-scenes efforts, deployed military parents from bases across Europe and the Pacific won’t have to miss a major milestone in their child’s life: high school graduation.

About 60 parents deployed in Afghanistan, Iraq and other locations around the world have been invited to watch 12 graduation ceremonies taking place on bases in Germany, Italy and England. Additionally, several schools in the Pacific also will offer a live webcast of some graduation ceremonies in Japan, Guam and South Korea.

“It’s all about the kids and the families,” said Nancy Bresell, director of Department of Defense Dependents Schools Europe. “We’ll do whatever it takes and whatever we can to bring them together for such an important event in a child’s life -- probably the single most important event.”

The following graduations in Europe and the Pacific will be broadcast online:

-- Today: Ansbach, Bamberg and Heidelberg High Schools in Germany;

-- Tomorrow: Baumholder, Hohenfels and Kaiserslautern High Schools in Germany; Lakenheath High School in England; Vicenza High School in Italy; Guam High School in Guam; Edgren High School in Japan; and Daegu American School in South Korea;

-- June 11: Bitburg and Mannheim High Schools in Germany and Kubasaki High School in Japan;

-- June 12: Wiesbaden High School in Germany; and

-- June 14: Ramstein High School in Germany.

To watch a graduation, family and friends can get access information from their graduating senior or local Defense Department school.

For more on this effort, see my American Forces Press Service article, Technology Enables Deployed Parents to See Graduations.

For more family-related posts, visit Family Matters blog or check out Family Matters on Facebook and Twitter.


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