And those are the honest students; others lie about their service and fulfill their requirement without ever actually conducting outreach.
The program needs to be repaired, and to make the program successful, it should be student-run.
The administration is planning on revamping the community service program. Director of Community Service Jan Stewart is now part-time, and according to Stewart, this is her last year working here.
In the future, more power over community service may be given to the revamped Prefect Council. However, the Prefect Council has enough to do: they have to oversee school events and foster school spirit while at the same time serving on the Honor Board.
The program should be completely student-run, modeled after the thriving Peer Tutoring and Peer Support programs. Both programs have faculty advisers but are run by a hierarchy of students and led by student coordinators. The community service program should be unrelated to the Prefect Council.
A small group of seniors could oversee the entire program as community service coordinators. Other students would be in charge of operating individual projects of their own choosing. Students would take part in these projects to receive community service credit.
A major problem with the program right now is verifying that students conduct community service. To fix this, students should be required to take part in a school-approved collaborative project, run by a student or group of students under the auspices of the community service coordinators.
True, this will reduce flexibility in the program, but it will ensure that every student takes part. And is it really so bad to force a few students to do more community service?
Activities can be related to studentsâ extracurricular activities as well. Athletes can teach golf or tennis for free, actors can help other schools run a successful production and artists can help underprivileged children develop their artistic skills.
Ideally, the school would have a mandatory community service day, where all students and faculty members take part in one of several school-sanctioned activities.
We trust fellow students here with tutoring one another and supporting one another through good times and bad. Students should be responsible for making sure we fulfill our responsibility to the community as well.