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What a Difference a Year Can Make!


Michelle Norman alongside Austin Carrigg, testifying at the Congressional Hearing, February 5, 2020.

What a difference a year can make! One year ago, our Executive Director and Founder of Partners in PROMISE, Michelle Norman, participated in a Congressional Hearing advocating for military children with special needs. She presented the stories and struggles that her family and many other military families face regarding special education and the Exceptional Family Member Program. One year later, 50% of Partners in PROMISE’s initiatives have been met through the signing of the 2021 NDAA. The NDAA 2021 included historic changes for the education of military children in special education across all service branches, including:

  • Special Education Attorneys for all Branches of Service
  • Standardization of EFMP and Respite Care Programs
  • GAO study on impact aid funds and barriers to Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)
  • Case management model for EFMP
  • Individualized services plan program STRENGTHENED (not removed as originally proposed by the Senate Bill)

Michelle, we are grateful for your grit, grace, and leadership; for supporting our entire military community, not just special education. Here’s to building on the past and continuing forward with a passion and momentum second to none as we tackle issues regarding remote enrollment and Individual Education Plans/Programs. Happy Anniversary- We are excited for what the future holds!

Watch Michelle’s Congressional Testimony Beginning at 37:38

Read Michelle’s full prepared statement from the 2020 House Armed Services Committee Military Personnel Subcommittee here.




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