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Progressive teacher education programs face a pair of daunting yet crucial tasks. New teachers must be prepared to function effectively in schools as they exist today. They also must be educated to take a leadership role in the improvement and restructuring of P-12 education to meet students’ and society’s needs more fully. Service-learning appears to have considerable potential as a method to achieve both these goals.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation believes that meaningful service to the community, combined with curriculum-based learning, builds stronger academic skills, encourages lifelong civic commitment, and improves workplace and personal development skills among youth. Educators lead students in directed reflection so that students connect what they are learning to the service performed, both personally and to the community. Well-designed and implemented service-learning activities address these goals successfully.