Recognition Programs for MPS Secondary Students: History

In 1997 the Mesa Service Learning Advisory Board began researching a recognition program for Mesa high school students involved with service learning. The early significant decisions were that there would not be a mandate or a graduation requirement, that students of all ability levels would be able to participate, and that students could earn hours through both classroom-based or extracurricular service learning. It was also decided that preparation and reflection hours “could count” in addition to the hours of action or service itself.

The first class eligible for the Honor was the Class of 1999. Given just one year, they could earn the Honor for 50 hours or more of service learning. That first year there were 156 graduates who earned “the gold seal,” and they performed 13,520 hours of service. Overall, during 1998 – 1999 there were 930 tenth to twelfth graders who recorded 39,563 hours of service. 

The Honor program is implemented by the Service Learning Coaches at all the junior and senior high schools and overseen by the Service Learning Director and the Advisory Board. The service learning hours for each student are recorded on his/her individual school district data base record, and the total number of hours transfers onto each student’s transcript. At the point when the student earns 150 hours, the words, “Honor for Excellence in Service Learning” appear on the transcript.  Starting with the class of 2020, students will need to earn 200 hours in order to receive the honor.

The Silver Service Award for Excellence in Service Learning was instituted during the 2010-2011 school year for 7th and 8th graders. Junior High students will have two years to record 50 hours of service in order to earn "the Silver Seal."  Materials on this award are on this website under Junior High/Silver.