Phenix City Schools’ Beta Club Members Excel at State Convention, Advancing to Nationals

Phenix City, Ala.— Phenix City Schools have marked a significant achievement at the Alabama State JR/SR Beta Convention, with students securing 51 top placements, a testament to the district’s quality of education and student dedication. The Beta Club, emphasizing leadership and service, saw over 100 members from Phenix City compete and succeed in one of the nation’s largest junior conventions and a highly competitive senior convention.

This accomplishment comes when educational excellence and community service are more important than ever. “Our students have worked tirelessly, and their success at the state convention clearly indicates their hard work, talent, and the strong support system provided by our schools,” Dr. Weber remarked.

The achievement of Phenix City Schools at the Beta Convention is not just a win for the district but a shining example of educational excellence in Alabama. As these students prepare for the national convention, they carry with them the pride and support of the entire state.…Read More

Track It Forward Announces New Community Service Directory Feature

OAKLAND, Calif. – Track it Forward, a leader in volunteer time tracking software, is excited to announce the launch of its newest school-focused feature, the Community Service Directory. The Community Service Directory is designed for schools and school clubs and allows administrators to help match students with verified volunteer opportunities in the community.

Students can browse their school’s custom directory to find verified volunteer
opportunities and contact the organizer, all through their Track it Forward account!
School administrators and club advisers can build this custom directory by sharing a link with community organizations. The community organizers can then submit opportunities to the directory with all the necessary information and prerequisites.

Administrators can review each opportunity before it is posted to the Community
Service Directory, which means students will only have access to approved
opportunities for their school. This can improve the student volunteer experience
because students can easily find verified opportunities, which can increase volunteer hours while decreasing inaccurate reporting. …Read More

Track It Forward Announces Integration With Clever Single Sign-On

OAKLAND, Calif. – Track it Forward, a leader in volunteer time tracking software, just announced their new integration with the most widely used school single sign-on platform, Clever. Track it Forward is also the first volunteer time tracking app to be listed in the Clever Library.

Schools can effectively track service hours by implementing this easy-to-use volunteer time tracking software. The new integration with Clever will make it easier than ever for students to log community service hours and for teachers and administrators to track progress toward requirements and awards.

Track it Forward allows school districts and teachers to set up custom categories for different types of community service, and students can view their progress toward milestones, or service hour goals. In addition, students can submit verification of volunteer work completed onsite, like signatures, selfies, and GPS locations.…Read More

Virtual Tutoring and Mentoring

Grow Your World (GYW) has transitioned its services from in-person to virtual in the midst of social distancing measures required by COVID-19. This virtual transition enables GYW to provide tutoring and mentoring services to middle school students, as well as tutoring to elementary schoolers, throughout the U.S.

Youths participating in GYW can choose any combination of weekly tutoring sessions in standard academic subjects, while also exploring non-traditional programs such as goal management skills, mindfulness and stress reduction skills, community service, arts and crafts, and identity caucuses. All programs are pay-what-you-can and design-your-own-schedule.

GYW has recruited twenty students from UNC Chapel Hill to serve as tutors and mentors for these youths in the areas of their expertise. Services are provided in both English and Spanish. Enrollment is now open.…Read More

Community service and professional development a winning combination

Picture a group of students storming a council meeting, except they aren’t there to protest—they’re there to run the meeting. One student, witnessing the needs of the elderly and handicapped in her community, creates a handyman organization. Another student, noticing a social gap between special needs students and others, creates a horticulture program and greenhouse garden curriculum to help forge new friendships.

Community outreach is important for students, not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because service shows students how to apply their skills in the real world. Service diversifies our experience and makes us process information differently by introducing us to new world views, a vital skill when problem solving.

In the real world, professionals are expected to solve problems and get the job done. The Texas FFA (Future Farmers of America) takes a lot of pride in showing students how to apply STEM education to real-world concepts with an emphasis on giving back. Giving back also has the benefit of making students more prepared to enter the workforce. By being more aware of the world around them and working to improve communities, students gain skills that apply to every career field.…Read More

How our school is personalizing learning through co-teaching

Greenwood College School is a not-for-profit, independent, grade 7 to 12 school with about 450 students and about 60 teachers. We focus not only on academic achievement, but also on each student’s character development through connecting to their varied interests, both inside and outside the classroom. At Greenwood, we emphasize community service, extracurricular activities, outdoor education, the arts, and athletics. We want our students to venture out in the real world, experiencing life as much as possible.

Schools looking to personalize learning generally aim to increase interactions between the student and teacher. To achieve this goal, the most straightforward approach would be to have fewer students per teacher; the idea is that the teacher will have more time to devote to each individual student’s growth.

Did you know that it’s Digital Citizenship Week? Click here to learn more!…Read More

How software streamlined our community service program

Until last year, we were nearly drowning in the paperwork of an antiquated, cumbersome community service system. Then we discovered x2VOL

Here are ten tips for going paperless with a high school community service program.

Giving back to the community through volunteer service is a value we want to instill in our students at Morton Ranch High School in Texas. In the 2012-13 school year, more than 600 students gave more than 9,000 hours to local charities and organizations through our community service club, MAVS (Maverick Achieving through Volunteer Service).

Technology has made it much easier to manage such a large and diverse program. But it wasn’t always this way. Until last year, we were nearly drowning in the paperwork of an antiquated, cumbersome system.…Read More

Senior-student mentoring can be a win-win

Effectively pairing senior volunteers with students is one of the big win-win opportunities in virtually every community in the country, says U.S. News and World Report. There is great need in the schools, and it’s gotten more acute during the recession. Enter a growing stream of retired folks who’ve enjoyed stable and successful careers, are loaded with skills and experience, and are eager to give back to their local communities. But in talking with one of the country’s most successful senior tutoring and mentoring programs — Experience Corps — it’s clear that a lot of work needs to go into successful partnerships. Experience Corps doesn’t claim its approach is the only or even best way to engage seniors with kids. But it does claim that it works, and has the research to prove it. The Washington-based nonprofit has programs in 22 cities, with a total of about 2,000 senior volunteers and 20,000 students. The program works with younger students — kindergarten through third grade — and focuses its efforts on at-risk children in lower-income areas. In the cities with Experience Corps programs, that support doesn’t come cheap, averaging between $1,000 and $2,000 a year per student. More than half of the money flows right back out to participating volunteers, and finding the right volunteers, training them, and successfully matching them with students also requires staff and money. But the benefit of this approach is reflected in volunteers who stay committed to the program and their students, and go well beyond the minimums in providing support. Research has shown that a student needs to have at least 35 one-on-one sessions a year with a volunteer to make sustained progress in reading and verbal skills…

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New program combines technology, community service

Participants in the START initiative, the Service & Technology Academic Resource Team, share how their school's service-learning projects pair technology and community service.
Participants in the START program describe how their service-learning projects pair technology and community service.

Students at six schools from across the country are taking part in a pilot program that uses “service learning” as a way to revitalize their schools and communities while gaining valuable 21st-century skills.

The Service & Technology Academic Resource Team (START) program, launched by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and Microsoft Corp., aims to create a new kind of collaboration between students and teachers through technology-focused service learning.…Read More