Community Service Learning Program (Act 648)

About the Program

Legislation passed in 1993, Act 648 allows a secondary student who has completed a minimum of seventy-five (75) clock hours of documented community service learning, as certified by the service organization to the school, to be eligible to receive one (1) academic credit that may be applied toward graduation. The Arkansas State Board of Education is the authorized agent to promulgate rules and regulations necessary for implementation of Act 648 of 1993. The Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support, as a partner with the Board of Education, provides orientation and volunteer management training for community service learning sites. The Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support, in conjunction with the Department of Education, has developed a training module/manual for use with schools and community program sites. Benefits of Community Service Learning A student may use the experience of community service as:
  • a topic for college entrance exams
  • a means for choosing or discarding a career path
  • a means of gaining work experience
  • a means of getting entry-level experience in the job market
  • a means of gaining an extra credit for graduation
For more information on the Arkansas Mentors Program, or to start a program in your area, please contact Selena Ellis, Program Administrator, at 501-682-7540, or toll-free at 1-800-482-5850, ext. 27540.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the role of the Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support in Community Service Learning?
The Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support (DCSNS) is a partner to the Department of Education with Community Service Learning. Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support's role is to provide volunteer management training for sites that have been approved by the Board of Education. DCSNS also serves as a data collection point for approved sites.
 
How do we start a Community Service Learning program in our school?
To start a CSL program in your school, request initial information about the program from the DCSNS office or the State Department of Education. The next step is to obtain the approval of your school's administration. A DCSNS representative can be scheduled to make a presentation to appropriate faculty and/or school board members to initiate the program.
 
What are the approved Community Service Learning sites in my area?
A list of approved CSL sites may be obtained from the DCSNS office or from the State Education Dept. DCSNS's information is arranged by county and can be quickly and easily provided upon request.
 
Which schools in my county have Community Service Learning programs?
Information concerning which schools offer the ACT 648 of 1993 Community Service Learning Program is not available from the Division of Community Service and Nonprofit Support. The most efficient way of obtaining this information is by contacting the schools directly.