Community Service activities are consistent with the development of a strong Christian testimony and reflect on the reputation and character of both the individual and the school. Community Service is an important aspect of our secondary curriculum. The Westlake Christian Academy vision, “Every Student a Disciple of Jesus Christ” is realized as students serve others (Matthew 20:25-28). As a body of believers in Jesus Christ we recognize that service to each other is vital to the proper functioning of Christian community as well as the natural expression of the gospel in society.
Community Service is a conscious and intentional component of Westlake Christian Academy. It is an active effort to help students implement the spiritual and intellectual knowledge they are learning in the classroom. A key aspect of the Christian life is that we are called to serve others as our Savior did. However, serving others is usually a learned character trait. That is why Westlake requires secondary students to engage in community service. The goal is far more than just putting in the hours. First and foremost, we desire that students develop a desire to help others. We want our students to learn to see needs and act to meet them.
To meet our requirements, community service must be associated with a formal organization other than Westlake Christian Academy, and the student cannot receive a wage or remuneration for their service. The organization could be a church, the local park district, a food pantry, a homeless shelter, a nursing home, a school, etc. The Community Service Guide offers many suggestions, but the possibilities are limitless. The emphasis of community service is the local, Chicagoland area rather than out-of-state or overseas. Lake County or adjacent counties would be the appropriate area in which to perform community service. Students are strongly encouraged to lock into a service ministry which provides regular service opportunity and enough hours to meet the standard. An official supervisor or other leader of the service/ministry organization must sign off on a description of the service activity, the date and the hours of service. Community Service forms must be turned into the office quarterly and will be reflected on report cards and transcripts. Community Service does not receive grades or credits nor is it included in the GPA calculation.
High school students must participate in 25 hours of community service per school year for every year in attendance at WCA as a requirement for graduation. Junior High students must participate in 10 hours of community service per school year. This requirement will be prorated for those students who enroll after the start of the school year. Community service is normally to be conducted outside of the school day. There are four Community Service documents available on our website:
- Community Service Rationale and Guidelines
- Community Service Ideas Guide
- Community Service Cover Letter for Organizations
- Community Service Reporting Form