Parke Heritage High School is proud to be among the inaugural schools to receive the Purple Star designation by the Indiana Department of Education. This designation honors schools who display a commitment to service members, veterans and their families.
“Honoring our country’s military has always been a part of my life and family,” said Dwight Ashley, Parke Heritage High School principal. “This is the least we can do for those Wolf Pack students that choose to sacrifice and serve our country, and to also honor alumni that have served.”
In its first year, schools had to meet specific requirements to receive the Purple Star school designation. These include, assigning a point of contact for military families, passing a resolution supporting military students and families, guaranteeing interviews for service members and their immediate family who meet the minimum job qualifications and more. In total, 60 schools received the inaugural designation.
Sheryl McDaniel, counselor at Turkey Run Elementary and Parke Heritage High School, is serving as the point of contact for the school. To become the contact person she had to complete specific training regarding military families and how to support children of military families. This included learning about military culture and specifically becoming a resource for military students. The educational training also discussed the commitment schools can provide service members, veterans, and their families; specifically our students.
A resolution was passed by the school board at the May meeting. This resolution is part of the requirements to become a Purple Star school.
“I am excited to be a part of the Purple Star School Designation. My sister and brother-in-law are both active in the Air National Guard and I have aunts, uncles, and a father-in-law who have served our country. Veterans and current service members deserve recognition for their sacrifices made to serve and protect our country,” McDaniel said.
A special page on the high school website has been established to recognize our military alumni. The page is located at this link: https://phhs.ncp.k12.in.us/news/purple_star_school
“We are hoping to expand our Purple Star webpage by having alumni provide names of Turkey Run High School and Rockville High School alumni who have served our country,” McDaniel said. “The community is also welcome to scan a photo along with the name of the veteran and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. This will allow us to update the Purple Star webpage to include alumni.”