A substantial number of public schools on military bases are in either poor or failing condition, and many are overcrowded, a new report card by the Defense Department shows.
The latest data adds to the grim portrait of dilapidated and undersized schools described in an iWatch News investigation , which found that three in four Pentagon-run schools are either beyond repair or would require extensive renovation to meet minimum standards for safety, quality, accessibility and design.
Where military children go to school depends on circumstances often beyond families' control. More than 500,000 children, the largest proportion, live off base, attending local schools in urban or suburban communities that often have significantly more resources.
But families who live on military installations -- either for economic, career or security reasons -- send their children to one of 194 base schools operated by the Pentagon around the world, or 159 base schools in the U.S. operated by local school districts. These students -- about 150,000 in all -- are likely to attend schools with significant structural deficiencies.
The latest Pentagon report card on schools where sons and daughters of military personnel are starting classes focuses on the public schools on military bases. The report identifies nearly 40 percent that are in "poor" or "failing" condition.
Altogether, 62 of the 157 public schools on military bases that were inspected by the Pentagon were in either poor or failing condition. And 28 schools--including many of those in poor or failing condition --were over capacity by at least 15 percent and sometimes as much as 30 percent.