Missoula’s own Valley Christian School is among the first ever recipients of the Purple Star Award, to honor students whose parents are currently serving in the military.

It is a program that supports military-connected children as they relocate to new schools due to a parent’s change in duty station.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen provides details.

“The Montana Military Interstate Children's Compact Commission is a state organization and all 50 states have a compact,” said Arntzen. “I serve as one of the commissioners and it is housed at the agency the Office of Public Instruction here in Helena.”

Arntzen said the Commission came into being back when she served in the Montana Legislature.

“It came into being when I was a legislator, and I've improved it and made it very strong,” she said. “This is a program for honoring military families and children that came out of Ohio and our commission has adopted this and we have awarded our very first group of schools, of which there are five across our state. There are three in Great Falls, one in Kalispell, and one in Missoula, and this award is for both public and for non public schools.”

Arntzen said she was delighted to announce the first five Montana schools to receive the award.

“What a joy it is to honor the families and more important to notice that these children are enrolled in our schools, both public and non public across our state,” she said.

Valley Christian is a private Christian School established back in the early 1970’s, located on Sunset Lane in Missoula.


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