• What is Learning Through Service?

    It is a teaching and learning approach that integrates community service with academic study to enrich learning, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities.


    ALL students at Waterford High School must complete and document a total of 80 hours of service over the course of four years as part of the Waterford High School diploma requirements.  Students failing to complete the service requirement will NOT be permitted to graduate.  It is suggested that students perform and document at least 20 hours per academic year. Required total hours are pro-rated for students entering after the first semester of the freshman year as determined by Ms. April Cairns, Learning Through Service Program Coordinator. Students are responsible for having a thorough familiarization with and understanding of all LTS rules, procedures and practices. Ms. Cairns is available to answer any questions students may have about the program. All forms may be obtained on the LTS bookcase in the guidance area.
    We maintain a Learning Through Service folder as part of each student's cumulative record file.  The folder contains copies of LTS paperwork submitted throughout the student's high school years. Students may request their completed file at the end of their senior year provided they have completed their LTS requirement. Any LTS folders remaining unclaimed after graduation will be destroyed.

    What is an acceptable LTS project outside of the classroom?


    The following are some of the criteria which will be used by Ms. Cairns, Learning Through Service Coordinator, when determining “meaningful” service.  The service must:


    • be provided to a non-profit organization (not a business)
    • be provided free of any remuneration (no payment)
    • be consistent with the Waterford High School philosophy as approved by the Waterford Board of Education
    • be an active experience that measurably benefits another person, the school community, or the community at large.  Performing tasks for family members, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, private associations or clubs, etc. does NOT count as a service project. Travel time, attending meetings, orientation, training or rehearsals does NOT count toward your LTS hours.


    Any project that does not clearly meet the above criteria MUST receive pre-approval from Ms. Cairns or the hours will be denied. Any and all projects performed for nursing homes, hospitals, and colleges/universities require pre-approval. Please note that under most circumstances, LTS credit for marathon events such as Relay for Life will be limited to a maximum of 4 symbolic hours. Any exceptions will require pre-approval.

      What is the policy on volunteering in a private residence or for a private club, individual, association or family?

    Performing tasks not limited to but including babysitting, shoveling snow, raking leaves, mowing lawns, home maintenance, tutoring, music lessons, dance lessons, karate lessons, and so on, in someone’s home or for a private individual, association, club or family does not constitute a service project.


    How do students find out about opportunities?

    Notices of various service opportunities are available on the LTS bulletin board in the Guidance area and on the LTS web pages of the WHS website under the Departments tab. Explore the pages labeled "Upcoming LTS Opportunities" and "Ongoing LTS Opportunities." These can be accessed on the menu to the left of the web pages. Students may also want to develop their own projects. These projects MUST receive pre-approval. For consideration, it is necessary to submit a green, independent LTS project form with Part A fully completed.

    When can students conduct service projects?

    Independent LTS Projects may only be performed outside of regular school hours. Students may begin service projects during the summer following completion of middle school.   

    How do students document service projects?


    Students must fully document all service with official Learning Through Service paperwork and submit it to the Program Coordinator for final approval. Incomplete or unofficial documentation will require correction before hours can be considered. Please note that direct supervision of the project must be provided by an adult who is not related to the student volunteer. Documentation will only be accepted for the current academic year or prior summer. Strict adherence to published deadlines will be expected. Once school is dismissed at the end of the school year, no outstanding documentation will be accepted without prior arrangement with the Program Coordinator. LTS forms may be obtained on the LTS bookcase in the Guidance area or by accessing them from the menu to the left of this page.



    Questions concerning LTS may be directed to

    April Cairns, LTS Coordinator

    Phone:  860-437-6956 ext. 7141

    E-mail:  acairns@waterfordschools.org

    Learning Through Service