One of Communities in Schools Five Basic principles is to provide students with a chance to give back to peers and community. Involving young students in service projects helps them see themselves as agents in solving societal problems. It is an empowering act to give back, and it helps children value themselves as active and engaged citizens who can make a difference. It also generates character traits such as responsibility, leadership, and compassion.

Barcroft Elementary participated in the National Day of Service and Remembrance on September 11, 2018. This nation-wide day of tribute to those who serve and protect our communities afforded students a chance to give back and say thank-you to first-responders, veterans, crossing guards, and others in the community who help keep us safe. Students also worked to make school grounds safe and beautiful by weeding garden beds, planting flowers, and picking up trash on the playground. Others worked with an on-site county program at Barcroft called Even Start to converse with adults who needed help practicing English.

Whether helping others learn, cleaning school grounds, or creating art and notes of thanks to encourage community members, the students at Barcroft contributed meaningful acts of service along with the nation on September 11 this year. As one teacher noted, “It was a good opportunity to teach kids that they can help brighten other people’s lives by doing a simple project. All it takes is giving some time.”