LPStudentServe: A Student & District Initiative to Give Back

Click HERE for the LPStudentServe website.

It could be the first of its kind in the nation, a new K through 12 Lincoln Public School District initiative.

Ninth graders at Lincoln East are hearing about LPStudentServe for the first time.

Lincoln East Social Studies Teacher Tim Bayne explains to his Civics class, "What would happen on October 1, if we had 36,000 students go out into the community and serve for one day.Remember I talked to you guys about being empowered, this is how you're going to do it."

Freshman Dallas Drapal heard about LPStudentServe and says, "I think it's a good thing because it shows that we can be leaders too, and we can make a difference in our community."

That difference is a student led, student organized service day started by one of their fellow LPS classmates Southeast Senior Hope Edwards.

Edwards tells 10/11, "Students are all the time wanting to be apart of something, wanting to do something, they just aren't presented with the opportunity, so I thought how neat would this be to actually develop our skills that we're learning in school and have fun, but to also build our skills for the future, we our the future leaders."

Edwards along a directional team of other students are busy planning for October 1st. That's when they hope more than 4,000 kids, kindergarten through 12th grade, will volunteer a few hours of their time for a day of service.

She says, "It can be a number of projects, it can be spreading mulch, raking leaves, picking up litter, or writing letters to soldiers, painting hop-scotch lines, you name it the sky's the limit, it's all about creating a different mindset so that students learn the importance of giving back."

It's a program and a mindset that has LPS administration and teachers' support.

LPS Associate Superintendent Dr. Marilyn Moore says, "I think it's really important for all of us, regardless of our age, regardless of what we do in this community, to demonstrate that we're part of the community, and we have a responsibility to it, and to support others who are doing it, sometimes it means I'm the one out there raking leaves and doing it, and sometimes it means I'm the one supporting an organization and in this case it's LPStudentServe."

Bayne says, "So what we're really doing is working to change a culture of the students, that they can make a difference, that they can be an agent of change, and they can go out and serve."

Edwards adds, "LPS, I love LPS, I love Lincoln and I know other students on the student team do as well, and we are excited to be a beacon for our state, nation and possibly world."

In order to accomplish this, Hope and the other student leaders need help from people in the community.

Edwards "What we really need is places that high school students can serve, so businesses and organizations, we need service venues. Donations would always be helpful, with printing costs, with trash bags, paint supplies, lots of different things because students are going to be doing a variety of different activities."

She adds, "We need you to supervise, at the different service locations, and you can do that by signing up on our website, and of course we need you to encourage your kids to get involved, this has never been done before and what a neat opportunity for you and your kids to serve together."

If you're a business, service organization, student or parent and want to take part in LPStudentServe, you can sign up online by clicking on the link to the left.

Is it worth school time to teach the lesson of volunteering to students?

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