ERIC Number: ED494175
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Mar
Reference Count: 26
Educating for Active Citizenship: Service-Learning, School-Based Service and Youth Civic Engagement. Youth Helping America Series
Spring, Kimberly; Dietz, Nathan; Grimm, Robert, Jr.
Corporation for National and Community Service
This brief is the second in the Youth Helping America Series, a series of reports based on data from the Youth Volunteering and Civic Engagement Survey, a national survey of 3,178 American youth between the ages of 12 and 18 that was conducted by the Corporation for National and Community Service in 2005 in collaboration with the U.S. Census Bureau and the nonprofit coalition Independent Sector. The survey collected information on teen volunteering habits, experiences with school-based service-learning, and other forms of civic engagement. While the first brief in the Youth Helping America Series focused on youth volunteering and social institutions, this brief focuses on participation in school-based service--learning opportunities made available or required by schools--among middle school and high school aged youth. Particular attention is paid to the extent to which youth participate in service-learning courses, which integrate school-based service opportunities into the academic curriculum such as those programs supported by Learn and Serve America. By approaching school-based service from the perspectives of youth, it is possible to identify: (1) who among youth participate in school-based service; (2) their perceptions of what they accomplished in the experience; and (3) the relationship between this school-based service and their attitudes and behaviors toward other forms of civic engagement. According to the survey, 38 percent of youth--or an estimated 10.6 million students nationwide--report current or past participation in community service as part of a school activity or requirement. Of these students, 74 percent, or approximately 7.8 million, are either currently enrolled or were enrolled within the previous year in a course that contains a service component, while 26 percent participated in such a course at some time in the past. High school students are more likely than middle school students to have participated in at least one school-based service experience. Of all school-based service experiences, more than three-quarters (77 percent) take place as part of a course that contains one or more of the generally accepted elements of high-quality service-learning. These elements include: (1) Planning the service activity (36 percent of all courses); (2) Participating in regular service for a semester or longer (36 percent of all courses); and (3) Writing or reflecting on the service experience in class (51 percent of all courses). The results of this analysis indicate that those youth who do participate in school-based service also are more highly engaged. (Contains 17 charts and 3 figures.) [For the 2005 brief in this series, "Building Active Citizens: The Role of Social Institutions in Teen Volunteering," see ED493617.]
Descriptors: Service Learning, Citizenship Education, Student Volunteers, National Surveys, Secondary Education, School Activities, Student Attitudes, Student Participation, Secondary School Curriculum
Corporation for National and Community Service. 1201 New York Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20525. Tel: 202-606-5000; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.nationalservice.gov
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: Corporation for National and Community Service, Washington, DC.