Implementing a service requirement

Implementing a service requirement

Every Thursday during the winter sports season, I have gone to Rugby Portobello Trust to work with underprivileged children who live in the Notting Hill area. Being able to take a few hours each week to step outside the ASL bubble has allowed me to understand the lives of others in the community. Understanding these people has enabled me to gain a broader global perspective of others. There is no doubt taking part in community service has made me a better person and I urge the administration to implement a community service requirement for graduation.

Many private schools like ASL in the United States place an emphasis on community service. For example, Columbia Grammar and Prep in New York requires 60 hours of community service for graduation. I believe that if high school students are made to take part in community service opportunities, they will be able to possess a greater global perspective, a component of the school’s mission statement. Being able to immerse oneself in the broader community allows students to grow up with a more unique and diverse perspective. This means we should step out of the walls of ASL to gain more knowledge of others who are around us.

Our school has a tremendous Service Learning department which has thrived over the past few years, and it would be a disservice to the community if we do not take advantage of it. In the 2014-15 school year, 199 members of the High School Student body took part in a community partnership, while 266 students in the High School took part in the 2015-16 school year. In the 2016-17 school year, 280 students took part. These rising statistics show that community service is becoming more and more popular among High School students. While participation is on the rise, I believe that it should be a requirement for all students to take advantage of the service learning opportunities the school offers.

According to a study led by Maya Khanna of Creighton University, students who take part in community service are more likely to be successful than students who don’t. If the school were to implement this requirement, the results of community service could reap positive rewards for students in terms of higher grades. This could eventually lead to long-term impacts on college matriculation as students would be able to better perform in their classes and on their standardized tests.

Furthermore, the study shows that people who take part in community service have higher emotional health levels. Because students will be able to empathize with others, it leads to higher levels of self-esteem, which is essential to our own motivation towards our academic studies, our relationships and ourselves as people.

I believe that people who don’t already do community service should sign up and take part. Taking part in the community through service and projects promotes the courage to act for yourself and others in an empathetic way. Thus, I affirm that all students should have to fulfill a community service requirement in order to graduate.

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