Department of Defense Education Activity MISSION The Department of Defense Education Activity provides, in military communities worldwide, exemplary educational programs that inspire and prepare all students for success in a global environment. HISTORY Shortly after the end of World War II, the United States military established schools for the children of its service men and women stationed in Europe and the Pacific. Schools for children of military members stationed at various bases in the United States were already well-established. First administered by the military branches they served, the growing number of schools was soon transferred to civilian managers, then organized into two separate but parallel systems: the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS) overseas and the Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS) in the United States. In 1994 the two systems were brought together under an umbrella agency, the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA). ORGANIZATION The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) is a civilian agency of the U.S. Department of Defense. It is headed by a director who oversees all agency functions from DoDEA headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. DoDEA's schools are divided into three areas, each of which is managed by an area director. Within each of these three areas, schools are organized into districts headed by superintendents. SERVING THE MILITARY COMMUNITY DoDEA's schools serve the children of military service members and Department of Defense civilian employees throughout the world. Children of enlisted military personnel represent 85 percent of the total enrollment in DoDEA schools. DoDEA operates over 200 public schools in 15 districts located in 13 foreign countries, seven states, Guam, and Puerto Rico. All schools within DoDEA are fully accredited by U.S. accreditation agencies. Approximately 8,785 teachers serve DoDEA's 102,600 students. The DoDEA instructional program provides a comprehensive pre-kindergarten through 12th grade curriculum that is competitive with that of any school system in the United States. DoDEA maintains a high school graduation rate of approximately 97percent. The 3,102 graduating seniors in DoDEA's Class of 2002 earned more than $35 million in scholarships and grants. ASSESSMENT DoDEA monitors student progress through the use of standardized tests. Students take the Terra Nova Achievement Test, a norm-referenced test for students in grades 3 through 11. Every year, at every grade level tested, and in every subject area, DoDEA students score above the national average. DoDEA 4th and 8th grade students also take the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), "the Nation's Report Card." DoDDS and DDESS student scores consistently rank at or near the top of the scale when compared with the scores of other participating states and jurisdictions.