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Service Learning

Service learning enables students to engage in meaningful community projects while building social, civic, and academic skills.

Service learning is about diving deep into real life. It is about asking important questions and understanding who you are. Through talking about what’s going on in the world, research into what makes things the way they are, and action to make change, students develop as strong leaders.

What Is Service Learning?

Service learning connects classroom learning with the things that matter to students, in their community. Under the new CPS Service Learning Policy, teachers connect service learning opportunities in classroom learning to authentic community issues. Whether it is a Math class or P.E., World History or Spanish, students partner with teachers to apply what they learn in class to solving real-world problems and healing the community.

What Is the Service Learning Requirement?

Beginning with the Class of 2020, service learning is a CPS graduation requirement. High school students must complete two classroom-based service learning projects, one in Civics or AP Government and one in another class. 

While every project will be different, all projects must connect to the curriculum, involve student voice, and include preparation, action, and reflection. As teachers incorporate service learning projects in their classes, students will engage in more projects than this required by the policy – and will make more and more of an impact on the world.

Service Hours Documentation

Though service hours will no longer be a graduation requirement for students in Class of 2020 and beyond, out-of-class volunteering and leadership will be recorded on student transcripts in the Awards and Honors section. This allows students to share their experiences and service with universities and employers.

For more information, please contact Alejandra Frausto, Project-based Learning Manager:

Department of Social Science and Civic Engagement

501 W. 35th St.
Chicago, IL 60616