Instead of reporting for class this morning, the 320 students in the Shorecrest Upper School reported for service with a total of 34 non-profit and community organizations around the city, country, and world. For the 8th consecutive year, students at Shorecrest Preparatory School in Saint Petersburg, Florida perform Service Learning projects as a part of the school’s annual Service Week. Service Week 2017 is Monday, March 13 through Thursday, March 16.
The entire 9th-12th grade Shorecrest Upper School student body participates in Service Week, a 4-day learning experience in which students immerse themselves in service projects with non-profits and educational institutions. Together, the students and their teachers will complete more than 5,000 hours of service over the 4-day period.
In addition to being an opportunity for students to serve, the Shorecrest tradition is an opportunity for students to flex their leadership and organizational skills as well. Many students, with the help of faculty sponsors, take the lead in developing and organizing service programs that support causes that are meaningful to them. This year, students have developed programs to help rebuild New Orleans and Haiti, working closely with faculty to recruit classmates to the project and to plan logistics, schedules and cultural activities.
Other groups of Shorecrest students have embarked on trips across the U.S. including a trip to National Forests in Tennessee and North Carolina, and another to Charleston, South Carolina where they will help clean up and restore historically significant cultural sites.
According to Shorecrest Director of Service Learning Diego Duran-Medina, “Shorecrest is one of the few schools in the nation, and maybe the world, that take four full days out of the high school calendar to do service (in addition to the 100 hours required for graduation, service clubs, and special projects throughout the year), allowing for an immersive experience of community service ranging from our local community of St. Petersburg to places like Haiti, Peru and Costa Rica. Service Week is good for Shorecrest and good for our community, and yet, we recognize and are humbled by knowing we still have so much more to do in the realm of learning through and with service.”
Shorecrest Upper School students will provide more than 5,000 hours of service during Service Week. Shorecrest Preparatory is focused on developing students as both scholars and citizens, and developing social responsibility through serving and learning
. Service Week serves as a testament to Shorecrest’s commitment to helping develop communities in the Tampa Bay region and across the globe through strategic partnerships to enhance service and learning.
As part of the school’s commitment to Service Learning, Shorecrest has launched the Center for Service Learning Leadership (CSLL), a summer institute for independent school educators. The program is funded in part by a grant from the Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS) and will host its first cohort in July 2017. For more information on CSLL visit www.leadingservicelearning.org.
Many Service Week photos here.