Department of Defense:

Professional Military Education at the Three Senior Service Schools

NSIAD-91-202: Published: Jun 20, 1991. Publicly Released: Jun 20, 1991.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined the implementation of selected recommendations at the three Department of Defense professional military education (PME) senior service schools.

GAO found that: (1) the schools took some form of action on at least 90 percent of the applicable Panel on Military Education recommendations, but failed to fully adopt some recommendations concerning faculty and students; (2) all schools adopted the Panel recommendation to use amended legislation covering compensation and ensuring that only high-quality military officers were assigned to the schools' faculties; (3) the schools implemented a Panel recommendation that would establish a phased education program for joint specialty officers; (4) only the Navy provided letter grades to its students; (5) only the Navy met the Panel's recommendation calling for the schools to have 10 percent of their faculty from non-host military departments by academic year 1989-90; (6) none of the schools planned to increase the non-host faculty representation to the recommended 25 percent by academic year 1995-96, but planned to implement the Military Education Policy Document (MEPD) requirement requiring half of the representation; (7) the Navy exceeded the Panel's recommendation that 10 percent of the student body represent each of the non-host military departments, the Army had 6-percent representation, and the Air Force exceeded the recommendation for Army students and had 8 percent of its students from the Navy; (8) the Joint Chiefs of Staff MEPD objectives differed from the Panel's recommendations, since the Panel's purpose was to assess the ability of PME to develop joint specialty officers and the MEPD purpose was to define objectives and policies regarding all institutions in the military education system by setting minimum, not absolute, requirements; and (9) the services implemented MEPD policy directives within the framework of their own PME requirements.