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Parent Information Letter


Dear Parent or Guardian,                                                            


Welcome to the Ponchatoula High School Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (MCJROTC) program.  We are looking forward to a great year. The objectives of the MCJROTC program are to help cadets develop leadership skills, build character, promote citizenship and responsibility, develop a sense of patriotism, and enhance self-discipline through the study and practical application of Marine Corps leadership traits and principles.  The MCJROTC program is not a recruiting program and we do not attempt to make Marines out of the students. Participation in the MCJROTC program incurs no obligation of future military service. Likewise, the program is not a disciplinary program for troubled or disruptive students.


The MCJROTC program at Ponchatoula High School is a four-year, four-level, elective academic course which provides one credit for each year satisfactorily completed.  The instructors in the MCJROTC program are considered “Highly Qualified” per the “No Child Left Behind Act.” For enrollment and continuance in the MCJROTC program, a student must be enrolled in and attending a regular course of instruction at Ponchatoula High School within the Tangipahoa Parish School System, be in a grade above the 8th grade, be of good moral character as determined by the principal of the school and the MCJROTC staff, be physically qualified to participate fully in the school's physical education program, and come into the program with a desire to learn. 


We believe the MCJROTC program offers several advantages to students, regardless of their plans after graduation. College and university ROTC scholarships valued in excess of $60,000 are available to deserving graduating students who meet qualifying standards. Students who plan to enter the armed forces after high school can earn the first rank promotion immediately following recruit training by successfully completing two years in any high school JROTC program. This first promotion is worth approximately $125.00 per month. For these young men and women who plan to pursue other avenues, the self-discipline, self-confidence, and leadership skills learned in this program will help them successfully meet the challenges of adulthood.


Cadets will have the opportunity to participate in many extracurricular activities, to include the unit drill team or color guard, as well as community service projects, unit fundraisers, and orientation trips.  The educational experience of each MCJROTC cadet will be significantly enhanced by participation in these important unit activities. 


The only fee that is required is a $20.00 fee for each cadet to cover the cost of a PT uniform which consists of a silk-screened PT-shirt and shorts. The PT uniform must be purchased within two weeks after the start of school. Cadets will wear their PT-shirt and shorts as part of regularly scheduled physical training and other scheduled extracurricular activities. Students will be issued a Marine Corps sweat shirt and sweat pants for cold weather PT days. The sweats must be returned at the end of the school year or when directed.


Three very important events take place within the JROTC that all cadets are expected to attend. The first is the annual Ponchatoula MCJROTC Drill and Athletic Competition. This event is held at the Ponchatoula football complex the first Saturday in October. The Drill Meet is free to the public, parents, and friends, and all are highly encouraged to attend. The second event is the annual inspection conducted by our Headquarters in Virginia. All aspects of the JROTC program are inspected to include an inspection of the cadets. The date for the inspection will be announced later. The third event is the annual awards banquet normally held in the first part of May.


In order for the academic year to get off to a smooth start, we need your help.  Along with your cadet, please read and sign all pertinent parts of the CADET PROCESSING FORMS, which will be given to your cadet during the first week of school.  We are looking forward to teaming with you to make each cadet’s experience in MCJROTC a rewarding one.  If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact the MCJROTC instructional staff. 



   I. C. BROWN, JR.                                                             D. F.DeRouen

   Chief Warrant Officer-3                                              GunnerySergeant

   U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)                                        U.S. Marine Corps(Retired)

   Senior Marine Instructor                                            Marine Instructor

   (985) 474-8834                                                             (985)474-8823

   (985) 386-6919 (fax)                                                    (985)386-6919                   


Unit Address:    Senior Marine Instructor

                                Ponchatoula High School

                                19452 Highway 22

                                Ponchatoula, LA 70454