Approximately 40 fail to meet extended community service deadline

By Michael Sugerman

Roughly 40 students failed to meet the community service requirement, even after a 14-day extension to May 21.

After around 80 students missed the original May 7 cutoff, Head of School Harry Salamandra sent an email to the delinquents offering a chance to complete the requirement. Students who fulfilled the mandatory four hours of service in groups of four by the May 21 extension will matriculate without penalty, Chaplain Father J. Young said.

The remaining 40 have an increased stipulation of eight hours of service by June 8. Seniors who miss the second extension will not receive diplomas and transcripts will not be issued to colleges.

Sophomores and juniors who fail to complete their hours by June 8 will have a heightened service requirement of at least 12 hours, which must be completed before registration in the fall.

Despite the number of those who failed to meet the requirement, Community Council member Emily Plotkin ’13 is still optimistic due to Community Council’s initiative to organize sports team events. Community Council made a concerted effort this year to organize more events for teams to complete their requirements together.

“I think this year we’ve had the least number of people ever to not fulfill their requirement,” she said. “And I think that can be attributed to sports teams. Since it’s Harvard-Westlake, most everyone is involved in those team service events.”

Though many students each year fail to complete service hours by the original deadline, Plotkin doubts that the guidelines will change. She said that compared to most other schools, the Harvard-Westlake requirement is incredibly light and that four hours of work with a group of four should not be difficult to manage.

“The Community Council, Father J. Young and Jordan Church feel like group service is a lot more meaningful,” she said. “You get to share the experience. It’s like team bonding.”