The United States Army Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) came into being with the passage of the National Defense Act of 1916. Under the provisions of the Act, high schools were authorized the loan of federal military equipment and the assignment of active duty military personnel as instructors. There was a condition that the instructors follow a prescribed course of training and maintain a minimum enrollment of 100 students over the age of 14 years who were US citizens.
In 1964, the Vitalization Act opened JROTC up to the other services and replaced most of the active duty instructors with retirees who worked for and were cost shared by the schools. Title 10 of the U.S. Code declares that "the purpose of Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps is to instill in students in United States secondary educational institutions the value of citizenship, service to the United States, personal responsibility, and a sense of accomplishment."
More recently, an improved student centered curriculum focusing on character building and civic responsibility is being presented in every JROTC classroom. JROTC is a continuing success story. From a modest beginning of 6 units in 1916, JROTC has expanded to 1555 schools today and to every state in the nation and American schools overseas. Cadet enrollment has grown to 273,000 cadets with 3,900 professional instructors in the classrooms. Comprised solely of active duty Army retirees, the JROTC instructors serve as mentors developing the outstanding young citizens of our country. The JROTC program is offered to any high school student, grades 9-12. Cadets earn 1 credit per semester they are in the program and passing. If a cadet is in the JROTC program each semester of every year of high school and passes, they will recieve 8 credits. We also have 8 LET levels