YORKTOWN, Va. (WAVY) – Eleven Yorktown schools were recognized this week, for the way they accommodate students of military parents.

The Purple Star designation, which lasts for three years, was awarded to five schools for the first time and another six for a second time. This brings the total number of schools in the district with the designation up to 16 total.

“The Purple Star award honors schools that demonstrate a commitment to meeting military families’ needs, while also providing resources and programming related to transitions and academic planning,” according to a release.

The Department of Defense employs about 150,000 in our region, according to the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce. Almost one in three children in the YCPS system have at least one parent in the military.

Purple Star schools can make it easier for these students, who generally move every 2 to 3 years, to adjust to new environments and curriculum.

The Virginia Council on the Interstate Compact for Military Children awarded the designation to first-time schools Mount Vernon and Seaford Elementary Schools, Queens Lake Middle, York High and York River Academy.

Second-time schools include Bethel Manor Elementary, Waller Mill Elementary, Tabb Elementary, Yorktown Elementary, Grafton Middle and Yorktown Middle. Coventry Elementary, Dare Elementary, Grafton Bethel Elementary, Magruder Elementary and Tabb Middle held the designation prior.

To see the full list of Purple Star Honorees in Virginia, click here.