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Another Crossroads? Professional Military Education Two Decades After the Goldwater-Nichols Act and the Skelton Panel

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The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations the Subcommittee reviewed the state of the officer in-residence professional military education PME system to determine what can, and should, be done to improve PME amid complex and evolving national security challenges. Military officers of every grade are expected to demonstrate intellectual agility, think critically, communicate well, conduct themselves with integrity, and lead others to perform strenuous tasks in difficult and often dangerous situations. The principal purpose of PME is to educate officers throughout their careers in preparation for this unique public trust. The Subcommittee endeavored to evaluate PMEs effectiveness relative to its purpose assess whether it is sufficiently responsive to military needs and appraise its component schools in their pursuits of well-resourced and qualitatively-rigorous programs. As a result, the Subcommittee identified specific areas for departmental action and further congressional oversight to promote continuing improvement of the system. In 1987, the year following the passage of the Goldwater-Nichols Act2 Goldwater-Nichols, the House Armed Services Committee the Committee established a panel on PME led by Representative Ike Skelton the Skelton Panel. The Skelton Panel undertook the last comprehensive congressional review of PME. The Skelton Panel assessed the PME systems ability to develop officers in both strategy and joint matters and the overall quality of PME, as well as the Department of Defenses the Departments plans to implement the joint PME requirements created by Goldwater-Nichols. The Panel published its findings and recommendations in a report, dated April 21, 1989 the Skelton Report.

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  • Humanities and History
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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