Building Our Paul PCS Community Through Service
Every high school student in the District of Columbia is required to complete a minimum amount of community service prior to graduation. This includes the students of Paul PCS. However, at Paul we view this as yet another opportunity for our students to grow and develop into global citizens who have roots in their local community.
There are many things to be gained from service in the community – let’s look at a few of them:
- Ownership: Students who do work in their local community develop a sense of ownership of the community, including its successes and problems.This sense of ownership promotes community-building behaviors in both students and their families, with greater investment and positive results in the community over time.
- Perspective: While students live in the community, their somewhat limited circle of interaction also limits their understanding of others within their community. Students who engage in community service activities often come into contact with people who are outside their immediate circle.
- Selfless Thinking: For many teenagers, High School is a time of discovering oneself. While this emphasis on self is normal, it is also healthy to spend some time focused on the needs of others.This shift in focus provides a healthy balance for the student, reminding them that even in the midst of trying to figure out their own identities, there are other people out in the world who are all trying to figure out their own answers.
- Empowerment: Students who engage in service projects get to see – firsthand – that they posses the power to make positive changes in the world. This glimpse into their own abilities is a very powerful reminder to students, that although they are not yet adults, they can make a difference.
- Habits: Every time someone spends their time in service, they become more likely to engage in service in the future. By engaging our students in service work while they are young, Paul is helping our community develop leaders who will be actively engaged in making the community better in the years to come.
At Paul PCS, our goal is not just education and the development of young minds, but also the development of our community through powerful educational experiences for our youth.
Service to the community plays an important role in the development of our students, helping ensure that as they mature, they are connected with the community and empowered to be a part of making it better.