St. Andrew’s Episcopal School makes serving others a priority beginning in the early childhood program and continuing until graduation.
St. Andrew’s was the first school in Mississippi to require service learning as a graduation requirement. Many students exceed the number of required hours and continue to serve, inspired by the personal fulfillment that comes from helping others.
Partnerships with local non-profit organizations offer Lower School students opportunities to serve within the community, from singing at retirement homes to baking desserts for those in need at Thanksgiving. Twice annually, the entire Middle School student body and faculty leave their classrooms behind to embark on a full day of service at charitable organizations throughout the Jackson metro area. Lower and Middle School students also participate in clothing, toy, and canned food drives and fundraising efforts for local, national, and international charitable organizations.
As they mature, Upper School students assume leadership positions, spearheading projects that benefit causes they personally champion. Projects have ranged from serving as counselors at an equestrian camp for inner city children to helping build a library in Nepal, from constructing houses in Mississippi through Habitat for Humanity to performing humanitarian work in Cuba. The St. Andrew’s global studies program offers students many opportunities to serve in developing countries, while partnerships with local elementary schools allow St. Andrew’s students to teach children in their own community who might otherwise not have the chance to study world languages, complete a hands-on art project, or unlock the mysteries of robotics.
In addition to encouraging its students to serve, St. Andrew’s itself serves as a resource to the Jackson metro area community. The school “shares” its guest authors, artists, scientists, and lecturers, allowing students and faculty members from other secondary schools and universities to participate in learning events at St. Andrew’s. St. Andrew’s also offers its facilities, including the McRae Science Center, for use in summer camps, lecture series, and other programs benefitting teachers and students from outside the school.
St. Andrew’s emphasizes taking local action to solve global problems. The school’s focus on sustainability is reflected in activities ranging from growing edible plants in the campus greenhouse to an annual fashion show featuring haute couture made entirely from recycled items.
At St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, students lay the foundation for a life filled with genuine meaning and purpose, and realize that one of the best lessons you can learn is that it’s not always all about you.