Last week NYLC’s Districts in Action program — a new and growing partnership with The National Center for Learning and Civic Engagement at the Education Commission of the States — launched its work in Richardson, TX. Through working directly with youth, teachers, administrators and policy makers, Districts in Action demonstrates the promise of high-quality, community-focused service-learning for improving student academic and civic learning outcomes at the district-wide level.
The multi-year initiative with the Richardson Independent School District kicked-off with a summer training followed by an immersion training — a three-day professional development experience that brought together the district’s service-learning community to build a strong foundation for implementing community-focused service-learning in the upcoming school year.
14 passionate and committed elementary and middle school teachers came together over the course of 3 days to learn, experience and ultimately design academically aligned service-learning projects to be implemented in their classrooms this school year.
The excitement in the room and the shared commitment to developing engaging and academically rigorous service-learning projects was palpable. Teachers openly embraced the process and began to see how service-learning as a pedagogy can support them in meeting their individual curricular goals and standards as well the larger goals of their District.
We look forward to supporting and coaching RISD as we embark on this continued journey together to develop engaging learning opportunities for all young people, strengthen academic and civic learning outcomes, and advance the field of service-learning.