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This will be the 1st Army JROTC program in Tri-Cities, TN. It took 10 years to get it

Service members. (Bob Gathany/[email protected] HVT/TNS)

Students at Hanford High School will have the option of enrolling in the U.S. Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) when they select their classes for the 2023-24 school year.

“We are excited to welcome JROTC to Hanford High and so fortunate to have other educational partners helping us launch this new opportunity for our students,” said Principal Mike Johnson in a Tuesday news release announcing the program.

It’ll be the first Army JROTC program of its kind in the Tri-Cities. Kennewick High School hosts an Air Force JROTC.

Army JROTC is “one of the largest character development and citizenship programs for youth in the world,” according to the program’s website. More than 1,700 public schools, private schools, military institutions and correctional centers operate Army JROTC programs.

“Richland School District has looked forward to partnering with the Army JROTC as we have been on the wait list for a decade,” Assistant Superintendent Todd Baddley said. “We will begin immediately working through logistics to prepare an excellent program for our students.”

Leadership Education and Training, the name of the program’s curriculum, is taught by retired military personnel hired by both the Army and school district.

JROTC units also host drill competitions, air rifle competitions and the Cadet Leadership Challenge.

The program also has proven to increase student attendance, boost graduation rates and reduce discipline issues within the classroom.

Hanford High staff will be hiring program instructors and setting up classrooms and other spaces in the coming months.


(c) 2023 Tri-City Herald

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