Welcome! On this page, you will find all of the most current news about Service Learning in Chicago Public Schools. Whether it is a new grant opportunity, an upcoming event, or a Service Learning conference or meeting, you can find it from this page. You can also find any new changes to the Service Learning Initiative. Check back regularly to find the most recent information about Service Learning in Chicago Public Schools.

2007 CPS 7th Annual Service-Learning Conference

Plan now to attend the 7th Annual Service-Learning Conference on Friday, April 13, 2007. This year's conference theme--Service for Social Change--reflects an important strand in the service-learning field that encourages students to understand and develop skills and knowledge necessary to address broader social issues and social policy through their service. Click here for registration forms. Click here if you are interested in presenting a workshop at the conference.

2007 Service-Learning Awards

Nomination forms for the CPS 2007 Service-Learning Awards are now available. Please consider nominating an outstanding Service-Learning Coach, principal, teacher, student, or service agency to receive the 2007 award. The nomination deadline is Friday, April 27, 2007. Click here to download the nomination forms.

Scholarship Opportunity

Arne and Karen Duncan are pleased to announce the 2007 CEO Service Leader Scholarship Award. Each year two CPS graduating seniors who have demonstrated outstanding academic potential and commitment to a lifetime of service receive the scholarship award. Graduating seniors intending to enroll in a two or four-year college or university are eligible to apply. Applications are now available.

For other service-learning scholarship opportunities, please go to the student page and click on scholarship opportunities.

Grant Opportunities

State Farm Youth Board
State Farm Insurance Company has established a Youth Board to facilitate the distribution of $5 million in grants to service-learning projects across the United States and Canada. The Youth Board is currently seeking grant proposals in the areas of 1) Driver Safety, 2) Disaster Preparedness, 3) Financial Literacy, and 4) Access to Higher Education. Proposal are due on November 15, 2006, and can be completed online at

Clay Aiken Able-to-Serve Grants
Awards of up to $1,000 are currently available to support service projects for National and Global Youth Service Day (April 20-22, 2007) in which youth with and without disabilities serve their communities together. Download application materials at or contact

Youth Leaders for Literacy
Youth Leaders for Literacy is an initiative of the National Education Association and Youth Service America to help youth plan and implement reading-related service projects. The National Education Association will award 20 grants of $500 each to support literacy projects that begin on NEA’s Read Across America Day, March 2, 2007, and culminate on National and Global Youth Service Day, April 20-22, 2007. Applications must be postmarked by November 24, 2006. For more information, visit

Service Learning Program Updates

Service-Learning Pilot Project Wave V

Nine CPS high schools are currently participating in the Service-Learning Pilot Project. Participating schools receive professional development and networking opportunities, additional resources, access to curriculum and sustainable service project opportunities. The following are Wave V schools:

  • Carver
  • Chicago School for Agricultural Sciences
  • Douglass
  • Dyett
  • Hirsch
  • New Millennium
  • North Grand
  • Robeson
  • Uplift Academy

A total of 60 CPS high schools have participated in the Pilot Project since its inception in 2002.

Service-Learning Pilot Project Wave V applications will be available for CPS high schools in February 2007. Twelve to fifteen high schools will be named to participate in Wave V. For information, click on Pilot Project from the main menu.


Issue 5: Fall 2006
Issue 4: Spring 2004
Issue 3: Fall 2003
Issue 2: February/March 2003
Issue 1: November/December 2002

Service Learning Events

August 2-3, 2006
National Urban Service-Learning Institute
Nashville, Tennessee’s Meharrey School of Medicine hosted the third annual Urban Service-Learning Institute. Urban service-learning practitioners met in Nashville to discuss best practices and develop new schools for implementation in cities across the country.

August 20-22, 2006
Service-Learning Summer Institute
The Service-Learning Initiative of Chicago Pbulic Schools hosted its fifth annual Service-Learning Summer Institute at Columbia College, 624 South Michigan. The Institute is designed to provide teachers with the skills, knowledge, and resources to use service-learning as a classroom teaching strategy. Contact the Service-Learning Initiative at 773/553-3425 if you are interested in attending.

October 6, 2006
Service-Learning Symposium
The Service-Learning Intiative of Chicago Public Schools hosted the fifth annual Service-Learning Symposium on Friday, October 6, 2006, at The University Center, for schools participating in the Service-Learning Pilot Project. Contact the Service-Learning Initiative at 773/553-3425 for more information.

October 23, 2006
Statewide Service-Learning Conference
The Illinois State Board of Education and the Lieutenant Governor’s Office hosted the Statewide Service-Learning Conference in Springfield, Illinois. The Conference brings together practitioners, students, and administrators from throughout the state to learn about best practices in service-learning.

January 13, 2007
Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration of Service
Chicago Public Schools is partnering with Chicago Cares to host the Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration of Service on Saturday, January 13, 2006. Contact Jonathan Marino at 773/553-2024 to sign your students up for the day of service. Go to our Service Learning Teacher section for curricular resources to prepare for the day of service.

March 2007
Si Se Puede! Cesar Chavez Days of Service
During the entire month of March, the CPS Service-Learning Intiative will sponsor service and reflection activities to honor the life and legacy of organizer Cesar Chavez, whose birthday is celebrated on March 31. Contact Jonathan Marino at 773/553-2024 or for information about service opportunities. Go to for curricular resources to prepare for the day of service.

March 27-31, 2007
National Service-Learning Conference
The National Youth Leadership Council is hosting the annual National Service-Learning Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Each year up to 3,000 service-learning practitioners from around the world gather to share ideas, resources, and best practices. Sign up by November 22, 2006 for the early bird rate. For more information, go to the conference website at

April 13, 2007
CPS Service-Learning Conference
Make plans now to attend the 5 th Annual Service-Learning Conference on Friday, April 13, 2007. The conference, designed for teachers using or hoping to use service-learning as a classroom teaching strategy, features students, teachers and community partners guiding creative service-learning projects across the city and across the curriculum. Conference registration forms will be available in January 2007.

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