Col. Barre Seguin, 14th FTW commander, speaks with Dr. Del Phillips, Columbus Municipal School District Superintendent, Col. Ken Bryson, 14th MSG commander, and E.J. Griffis, 14th FTW school liaison officer, Jan. 13 inside the cafeteria of the newly constructed Columbus Middle School on Highway 373 outside Columbus AFB. The new school will begin housing students Jan. 19 and is estimated to have just over 1,000 students attending it this year. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jacob Corbin).
Col. Barre Seguin, 14th FTW commander, takes a turn at writing on one the new Columbus Middle School’s “smart boards” Jan. 13 during a tour of the facility. Each classroom in the newly constructed facility houses one of these interactive boards that allow teachers a multitude of innovative tools to instruct with. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jacob Corbin).
Lori Cargile demonstrates a variety of the capabilities a “smart board” offers teachers while Col. Barre Seguin, 14th FTW commander, watches during a tour of the new Columbus Middle School Jan. 13. Ms. Cargile is the academic coach and International Baccalaureate coordinator for Columbus High School. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jacob Corbin).
by Airman 1st Class Chase Hedrick
14th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs
1/14/2011 - COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Parents often want to make sure their children have the best education they can get, and with some of the challenges and opportunities that come with military life finding the best options can become all too confusing. That's where the School Liaison Officer comes in.
SLOs can be found at several bases, and are a great resource for helping parents find the schooling opportunities they want for their children, from kindergarten through high school.
The School Liaison Officer for Columbus Air Force Base is Mr. E.J. Griffis, who works with the wing commander and the local school system. Mr. Griffis defines the majority of his job with three basic duties:
- Primary Advisor to the Wing Commander for all issues related to the education of dependent children.
- Providing Family Support in promoting and improving the educational environment of children.
- Promoting Communication and Partnerships by emphasizing communication, awareness and partnership between the schools, military organizations and parents.
Through the CAFB School Liaison Office social media Mr. Griffis gives updates on school closings and delays, information on special educational events in the local area, and links to new articles concerning schools to keep parents informed and aware of the best options available for their children.
There have been many initiatives between the SLOs and wing commanders at CAFB including school district choices for on-base children, five new magnet schools, and the Education Task Force.
The local school systems also work to support the SLOs efforts. Jan. 13 Col. Barre Seguin, 14th Flying Training Wing commander, and Mr. Griffis received a tour of the new Columbus Middle School just off base, and were similarly impressed. After seeing the new $19 million dollar building Mr. Griffis had one thing to say, "Wow."