Students have enormous energy, enthusiasm, and intelligence that they will devote to our commlll1ities when they are asked and given the opportunity. Schools are now doing the asking and they are creating opportunities, both in courses and as part of their extracurricular activities. Students have weather stripped and rehabilitated houses and tended animals at the zoo. They have planted marsh grass to save the Chesapeake Bay and tested streams for pollutants. They have created plays about drug and alcohol abuse and put on fashion shows for senior citizens. These are not simply nice things to do. They contribute to an individual's development of the strong, active character crucial to a vibrant national life. Student service is now an item on the national agenda. President Bush has initiated the Points of Light Foundation to promote his belief that "any definition of a successful life must include serving others." Senators Edward Kennedy and Barbara Mikulski were instrumental in obtaining passage of the "National and Commlll1ity Service Act" The best test of a program, however, is the actions taken at the local level. Maryland, which has often been called "America in miniature," has the opportunity to demonstrate just how good a service program can be.
Maryland State Department of Education, "Middle School Service-Learning Instructional Framework" (2004). Curriculum. 21.
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