The Community Involvement Hours policy supports the York Region District School Board’s believe that community involvement encourages students to develop an understanding of civic responsibility and the role they can play in supporting and strengthening their communities. The procedure outlines requirements associated with the completion of 40 community involvement hours required by students in order to graduate.
On this page:
Who has responsibilities?
- Director of Education
- Chief Financial Officer
- Superintendent of Education, Human Resource Services - Operations
- Superintendents of Education
- Community Involvement Activity Supervisors
How is this related to Board priorities?
The Community Involvement Hours policy and procedure supports student achievement and well-being by fostering positive relationships among students, staff, parents/guardian and community members It encourages engagement of students, staff, parents/guardians and community members in public education.
It is the expectation of the York Region District School Board that all employees, students and persons invited to or visiting Board property, or partaking/volunteering in Board or school-sponsored events and activities, will respect the policies and procedures of the Board.
Board Policy #620.0 Community Involvement Hours
1. Policy Statement
The York Region District School Board is committed to a healthy, robust and meaningful service experience for students as they complete their community involvement hours. Community involvement is about giving of oneself to make a difference for others and for the greater good of the community. It is about developing strong character. By donating time to help others, each individual develops his or her sense of self fulfillment and enhances his or her understanding of, and appreciation for, the character attributes adopted by the York Region District School Board.
The York Region District School Board believes that the purpose of the community involvement requirement is to encourage students to develop an understanding of civic responsibility and the role they can play in supporting and strengthening their communities. Community involvement increases student awareness of community needs and how they can make a positive difference. Helping others enhances the self-image of students and fosters a greater sense of belonging to the greater whole.
All secondary school students must complete 40 hours of community involvement in order to graduate. These hours may be completed at any time prior to graduation, beginning in the summer following grade eight.
2.1 Community Involvement Guide
The Community Involvement Guide, provided by the York Region District School Board, outlines information regarding the selection and approval of eligible and ineligible activities for community involvement hours.
2.2 Eligible Activities
Eligible activities are volunteer activities that may be counted towards the required 40 community involvement hours.
2.3 Ineligible Activities
Ineligible activities are activities that may not be counted towards the required 40 community involvement hours.
3.1 The Board of Trustees is responsible for:
reviewing the Community Involvement Hours policy in accordance with the approved policy review cycle; and
understanding and communicating with members of the community about the Community Involvement Hours policy.
3.2 Director of Education is responsible for:
implementing and operationalizing the Community Involvement Hours policy.
3.3 The Chief Financial Officer is responsible for:
ensuring all participants, including students and the sponsors of community involvement activities, are adequately covered by the Board's insurance.
3.4 The Superintendent of Education, Human Resource Services - Operations is responsible for:
promoting the spirit and intent of community involvement hours among internal and external stakeholders.
3.5 Superintendents of Education, Schools are responsible for:
ensuring school staff are aware of the Community Involvement Hours policy and communicating it to the broader school community.
3.6 Principals are responsible for:
supporting the community involvement requirement in their schools by identifying eligible volunteer opportunities for students;
communicating community involvement requirements, including the list of eligible and ineligible activities;
making community involvement information available to parents and activity supervisors; and
ensuring that proposed and completed activities are acceptable.
3.7 Students are responsible for:
completing 40 hours of community involvement in order to graduate from secondary school; and
selecting eligible activities for community involvement hours.
4. Legislative Context
Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act
Education and Community Services
Working Document June 2016
Revised March 2017
Board Procedure #620.0 Community Involvement Hours
This procedure outlines the process for support and administration of the community involvement hours required by students in order to graduate.
1.1 Eligible Activities
Eligible activities include:
Elementary Schools - assist with school events, school councils, activities for children;
Secondary Schools - organization and leadership of school activities that benefit the community;
Animal Care - volunteering in a zoo, animal shelter, or on a not-for-profit farm;
Arts and Culture - volunteering in galleries, libraries, community productions;
Charitable Organizations - assisting with special events, programs, clerical tasks;
Children/Youth Programs - assisting with children/youth programs, volunteering in a not-for- profit child care centre or camp;
Community Organizations - assisting with special events, food banks, community support services, shelters, clerical tasks;
Community Service for Individuals - assisting community members in need;
Environmental Projects - flower/tree planting, beautification projects, recycling projects, recycling depot;
Health Agencies - volunteering in hospitals, hospices, Canadian Blood Services (volunteering to organize or assist with a blood donor clinic), donating blood (time required to donate);
Law Enforcement Agencies - volunteering for activities sponsored by the police;
Political Organizations - activities related to legitimate and recognized political organizations; municipal, provincial and federal political activities except for York Region District School Board trustees or trustee candidates;
Religious Organizations - assisting with programs, special events;
Senior Citizens - assisting in seniors’ residences, providing services for seniors in the community;
Sports and Recreation - coaching, organizing special events, assisting with projects/events; or
Service Focused Club Activities - those activities that expand community service to others beyond the school day (holiday dinner participation, environmental action activities, etc.).
If an activity does not fall within the categories approved by the Board, and is not on the list of ineligible activities, students must obtain written approval from the principal before beginning the activity.
In cases where an eligible activity also falls within the definition of ineligible activities, the activity will be deemed ineligible.
Where a blood donor clinic takes place during the school day, hours will only be provided to those students volunteering during their lunch, spare periods or before and after school.
Activities at for-profit organizations such as private camps, daycares, or farms, will not be eligible. Ineligible Activities.
An ineligible activity is an activity that:
is a course requirement;
takes place during the school day with the exception of an activity that takes place during lunch or ‘spare’ periods;
takes place in a logging or mining environment, if the student is under 16 years of age;
takes place in a factory, if the student is under 15 years of age;
takes place in a workplace other than a factory, if the student is under 14 years of age and is not accompanied by an adult;
would normally be performed for wages by a person in the workplace;
involves the operation of a vehicle, power tools, or scaffolding;
involves the administration of any type or form of medication or medical procedure;
involves handling of substances classed as “designated substances” under the Occupational Health and Safety Act;
requires the knowledge of a tradesperson whose trade is regulated by the provincial government;
involves banking or the handling of securities, or the handling of jewelry, works of art, antiques, or other valuables;
consists of duties normally performed in the home or personal recreational activities;
involves a court-ordered program;
involves any volunteer work for a York Region District School Board trustee or trustee candidate;
involves participation in extra-curricular activities, or any position for which a student stands for school-wide election; or
involves any work for a for-profit organization.
2.1 The Director of Education shall:
allocate staff and resources to support the Community Involvement Hours procedure.
2.2 The Associate Director responsible for Program shall:
provide support for the implementation of the Community Involvement Hours procedure.
2.3 The Superintendent of Education, Human Resource Services – Operations shall:
address concerns that arise regarding eligible and ineligible activities; and
ensure that the Notification and Completion of Planned Community Involvement Activities form adheres to Ministry requirements.
2.4 Principals shall:
ensure a description of the community involvement requirement and an outline of the policies and procedures for completing the requirement are communicated to the school community, and specifically in elementary schools to students in the Intermediate Division;
ensure that students are provided with the information and resources needed to complete the community involvement requirement, including information about eligible and ineligible activities; and
ensure that personal information is collected and stored in accordance with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.
2.5 Guidance Staff shall:
provide advice and clarify the community involvement hours requirement for students, parents and community sponsors;
verify that activities are eligible and coordinate data input into the student record;
ensure that community involvement records are collected and stored appropriately;
track hours submitted to a maximum of 40 hours of community service; and
track hours submitted beyond 40 hours for those students who specifically request this through administration or guidance teachers.
2.6 Students shall:
complete 40 hours of community involvement activities beginning in the summer following grade eight;
ensure that parents and supervisors of their community involvement activities receive a copy of the Community Involvement Guide;
select community involvement activities from the Board’s list of approved activities, in consultation with parents if they are under the age of 18 years;
confirm that the community involvement activity selected is not on the list of ineligible activities;
obtain written approval from their school principal for a community involvement activity that is not on the list of approved activities; and
complete and submit a Notification and Completion of Planned Community Involvement Activities form to the guidance office.
2.7 Parents/Guardians shall:
receive information about the Community Involvement hours from students;
assist students under the age of 18 with the selection of community involvement activities;
sign the Notification and Completion of Planned Community Involvement Activities form for children under the age of 18; and
not act as the formal community activity sponsor(s) for their own children.
2.8 Community Involvement Activity Supervisors shall:
receive information about community involvement hours from students;
ensure activities offered meet the requirements community involvement hours;
provide appropriate training, health and safety precautions and supervision of students during the completion of their community involvement hours; and
complete and sign the appropriate sections of the Notification and Completion of Community Involvement Activities form to verify completion.
Education and Community Services
4. Procedure History
Working Document June 2016
Revised March 2017