Frequently Asked Questions

  • Service - How to Earn Points


    How do I earn points, and who keeps track of my total? 
     A point equals an hour of service, in most cases, but you may also earn points for things that go beyond time involved.  If you organize an event, for example, you might earn 5 service points.  If you donate three cans of food for a school-related food drive, that might equal one service point.  When service school-related service-learning, teachers will communicate possible points to you in advance.  Community service completed outside of school will all be calculated with the “one hour = one point” formula; organizers or supervisors of the service event will be asked to sign off on your participation by completing a Site Visit Verification Form.  All points will be documented on a service log that will be kept through GoogleDocs.  In May of each year, all service will electronically logged and verified by the International Studies Office.  (Additional Logs and Site Visit Verification Forms are available in the JAGS Office and online at Jackson Academy for Global Studies.)

    Frequently Asked Questions

    • Do we have to do this?  Yes.  If you want to earn the endorsement for completing the ISSN (International Studies Schools Network) graduation requirements.  If you earn fewer than the minimum points expected, you will receive a participation endorsement rather than a completion endorsement from JAGS.
    • What if I bring in 90 cans of food?  Am I finished for the year?  No.  We want your service points to represent a variety of activities.  Nice try.
    • I babysit my little sister all the time.  Does that count?  Nope.  That’s a nice thing to do to “serve” your family, but that doesn’t require you to become involved in your community.  Unloading the dishwasher doesn’t count, either.  What if I babysit for the kids next door?   Does that count as the community?  That depends.  Are you getting paid?  If “yes,” then it’s not community service.  Service should be something you offer to others without being asked, and without being compensated for your work.
    • What about donating goods – is that service?  When JAGS or JHS sponsors some kind of drive, we do think you’re helping out your community, and we will award points.  Outside of school, though, it is difficult for us to track the clothing items you donate to Goodwill or similar good deeds so make sure you get those items verified by the group's supervisor. 
    • What about volunteering during special events like Volley for the Cure or Relay for Life?  It depends on what you’re doing.  There are certainly opportunities during special events that benefit our community, but if you are being compensated for your time (you get in for free if you work at a t-shirt booth, for example), then you are not volunteering your time for free.
    • What if I already do service for NHS or my church?  Double dipping is allowed.  It counts.  Just bring in a completed Site Visit Verification Form to your advisory teacher to store in the service binder.
    • Who can sign off on my service hours?  Anyone in a supervisory position may sign off that you have completed hours of service, but we don’t accept signatures from moms/dads unless there are extenuating circumstances.  (If your parent is organizing a service event, then they would be in a supervisory position.  But if they give you a ride to the animal shelter, they may not sign off that you did the work.)
    • How does this affect my grade?  Sometimes academic work will be linked to service, like writing a required journal entry that reflects on service or participating in a service-learning activity like water conservation in math.  Some of the learning expeditions are also tied to community service or service learning.
    • What if I don’t have time?  Consider designing a service project that you can do during lunch or study hall.  You can also earn service points by researching an opportunity and completing an entry for the Service Opportunity Directory kept in your advisory teachers’ room.
    • What if I have more questions?  Talk to your teachers; we’ll solve big questions as a team of teachers.