It's Time to Rethink JPME II
NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI
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The Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986 created the Joint Specialty Officer and mandated Joint Professional Military Education requirements to improve joint officer management policies. Subsequent legislation created a two-phased approach to intermediate and senior level Joint Professional Military Education with Phase II being taught at the Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk, Virginia. This two-phased approach has worked well over the last fourteen years developing officers particularly trained in joint matters and has achieved the intent of the legislation, but not without a cost. The three-month JPME Phase II courses taught at the Joint Forces Staff College have a negative impact on the joint commands, the services and the individual officers. The manpower tax placed on the joint commands is unacceptable given todays high operational tempo. The services are held responsible for meeting the requirements of Goldwater-Nichols despite having little direct control over the release of an officer to attend JPME Phase II. Finally, the twelve-week temporary duty assignment places an unnecessary hardship on the individual officer. Several potential solutions to the current JPME Phase II problem are presented to include increasing the available school seats, shortening the length of the course, allowing the service colleges to teach JPME Phase II, converting the Joint Forces Staff College into a year-long joint intermediate college, developing a correspondence course, developing a distance education program, or eliminating the JPME Phase II requirement altogether. Each option is presented with an analysis of advantages and disadvantages. Finally, the options are compared with the conclusion that a combination of two or more options will likely present the best solution to the problem.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations