Dems press Hagel to exempt DOD teachers from furloughs

"The timing of these furloughs is especially damaging as they will be forced into the first month of school next year, impacting students' access to high quality education," they wrote.

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"Our fiscal situation is going to require shared sacrifice, but our service members and their families continue to make great sacrifices for all of us every day," they added. "When we send our men and women into harm's way, our responsibility is to provide their dependents with a quality of life that reflects the high standards and pride in the nation they defense."

The letter added that while DOD is furloughing 800,000 civilian workers, it is also exempting many workers from furloughs within DOD, and should expand those exemptions to include teachers.

The senators said DOD operates schools for military children in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. Worldwide, more than 83,000 students attend 193 DOD schools.