ECS National Center for Learning and Citizenship
700 Broadway, Suite 810
Denver, CO 80203-3442
Project Leader and Acting Director
Assistant Editor/Administrative Asst.
Assistant Policy Analyst
Visit the Christian County Middle School Web site
Christian County Middle School has a strong background in service-learning and the staff value continued quality professional development opportunities. Their mission and vision statement —Where learning is our purpose, proficiency is essential, and every student is important! — reflects the importance of service-learning in their schools by illustrating a commitment to leadership in educational excellence and to develop each student's unique abilities to achieve success and contribute positively to society.
The school partners with the University of Kentucky 4-H Extension Service staff.
Several schools in the Christian County Public School District engage their students in the Student Technology Leadership Program (STLP). With STLP, students' technological skills increase, impacting post secondary choices. STLP is project driven and allows students to come together, share, learn and achieve through projects which are selected by need and interest. Students and teachers learn from other students performing service. The school gains recognition with an active program. Students gain team building, communication, digital citizenship and leadership skills. Projects reflect: community service, entrepreneurial and instructional projects, training others and assisting with technical issues in the school. Students participate in student involvement categories; they produce products based upon interest and skill. Parents and the community are active partners.
While discussing potential projects to work on for the school year, the STLP students from Christian County Middle School chose to be the guiding leaders of the "Community Garden." These students have helped spread the word about the project throughout the school as well as to their families and community. After completing additional research about aspects of farming — such as planting times, types of soil for specific crops, and the actual need — the students came up with a plan of action. They planted flowering bulbs in the fall and will begin planting vegetable crops in the spring. To offset the need for the fresh produce, the STLP group is also having food drives to be donated to the local Salvation Army.
STLP has also created a Web site that will enable more community members to become involved in their efforts. The Web site will serve as a distribution site for service-learning resources, stories of STEM community partner experiences, etc.
Future plans for Christian County Middle School include:
- Provide research-based and effective mechanisms to motivate and engage students in the practice of engineering through "hands-on" community projects that are directly linked to science, technology and math
- Extend the professional learning communities to include engineering faculty
- Create appropriately aligned educational pathways that integrate STEM with core science, technology, engineering and math classes
- Leverage and scale the resources of their school and community partner
- Allow project outcomes to be incorporated into their school's Comprehensive Improvement Plan and organized mission.