Youth Leading the Way
Case Study: San Carlos School District
With a move by teachers and staff to incorporate more project-based learning into all areas of the curriculum, conversations with students revealed their desire to lead projects that focused on making a social impact. Led and implemented by students at Central Middle School in San Carlos, students developed and launched a campaign to help promote health at their school. This included promoting water at recess, holding a water bottle design contest, and revitalizing the student store.
In the past, the Leadership elective had focused mainly on issues surrounding creating a positive social climate at school. Get Healthy Community Implementation Funding provided an opportunity to combine the students’ many goals.Different sub-groups of the Leadership class were responsible for different aspects of the projects including logistics, marketing, research, and design.
“We were able to capitalize on other contextual, or school-based, issues that were already happening, such as project-based learning, as well as the popularity of the handcrafted, Etsy-like ‘maker movement,’” shares San Carlos School District Wellness Coordinator Mindy Hill. “This really helped ensure the students’ active involvement in the project and countered the challenge of burn-out that can happen over the course of a school year, in addition to inspiring investment on the part of the other students not in the leadership class.”