Central Valley Academy may soon have a new option for students looking for a way to expand on their civic duty and community service.
Principal Renée Rudd said during a telephone interview Wednesday she made a presentation to the school board during its regular meeting Tuesday to discuss incorporating a United States Marines Corps Junior Reserves Officer Training Corps program at the school.
“It’s really a heavy emphasis on self-discipline, leadership, honor and integrity,” she said.
Rudd said the participating students would meet in a class every school day, and would have opportunities to meet before and after school to participate in drill teams or rifle teams. Participating students would also be issued uniforms from the U.S. Marine Corps.
“We’re really excited about providing opportunities. We’re trying to provide college and career ready students,” she said. “The stress, the emphasis, for educators is advocating responsibility and respect, citizenship and leadership, which have a very positive impact on the school community environment.”
Rudd said the school board voted unanimously in favor of having an ROTC program at the school after her presentation Tuesday night. Rudd said she has started the formal application process and hopes to see the program enacted by the start of the school year in September 2014.
“It’s another example of a transitional opportunity we can offer students we wouldn’t have been able to if we hadn’t reorganized,” said Central Valley Central School District Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra, Jr. during a telephone interview on Thursday.
“The effects of the Marine Corps JROTC program reach far beyond the classroom and into the community in developing character, leadership and civic responsibility in tens of thousands of America’s kids,” said Bill McHenry, director of the Marine Corps JROTC program on their website. “Marine Corps JROTC at its essence is a character education program. The program keeps kids in school, helps them find their way during the turbulent teenage years and assists them in becoming productive members of their community.”
McHenry also states on the website the program produces “young men and women who are ready to accept the responsibilities as well as the privileges of citizenship.”