A history of the department of defense dependents schools, Okinawa, Japan, 1946-1978 Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/bz60cz85w

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  • The focus of this study was to identify persistent problems in the developmental history of the American Department of Defense dependents schools in Okinawa, Japan. The period of time covered was from 1946 through 1978. The study includes historical descriptions of curriculum development, obtaining and maintaining school facilities, and the changing ethnic composition of the student body. A review of major public laws, directives, and Congressional actions which influenced the dependents schools in Okinawa is also included. Several conclusions of the thesis are as follows: 1) Congressional site visits and surveys were a direct stimulus to improved educational programs for the overseas dependents schools; 2) staffing, facilities, increased enrollments and curriculum development problems in the dependents schools in Okinawa corresponded closely with those of the public schools located in the United States; 3) the unique features of the American dependents schools in Okinawa are the ethnic and cultural mix of the students, and the location in an Asian culture; and 4) an inordinate amount of time was spent by school officials in obtaining school facilities and logistical support. The study recommends that the Director of Dependents Schools should: 1) obtain authorization to restrict the movement of children overseas until adequate school facilities are provided; 2) systematically develop an educational program for American bilingual students in Okinawa; 3) direct school principals to include the study of Okinawan culture and language in the curriculum, and administratively support more involvement of American students in Okinawan activities; 4) continue the Five-Year Curriculum Development Plan with more parent and teacher participation; and 5) establish requirements to make annual reports direct to Congressional committees on the quality of education in overseas dependents schools. The study concludes that Congressional action withdrawing the management of dependents schools overseas from military control was justified. The American armed services placed a much higher priority on their military mission than school support for dependent children of officers, enlisted men, and civilians located overseas.
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