TPS Honor Service Project
Since 1997, TPS – The Potter’s School has promoted “virtue” or “excellence” (2 Pet 1:5-7) in education. Decades of working with tens of thousands of TPS students have continually affirmed the relationship between virtues of character traits — like service, sacrifice, initiative, and diligence — and success in college and career. There are many reasons for this connection, some obvious and some subtle. The most basic is that all excellence, including excellence in school and other labor, is tied to these traits of character even more than it is to innate talent or ability.
We have also continually affirmed that students who develop maturity to focus on real needs other than their own and serve compassionate causes bigger than themselves tend to be healthier mentally, spiritually, and physically. Students whose labor (including school) is motivated by other-centered service and responsibility are also more successful (and experience more joy and peace) in high school, college, career, and civic life.
In support of the importance of compassionate other-focused service as a foundation for excellence, TPS offers the Honor Service Project opportunity as an optional part of the Diploma Partnership. The Honor Service Project is an optional annual project-based opportunity to plan, perform, and lead a compassionate service project while developing character and contributing to a college and career application resume.
Student project proposals must be submitted each academic year to TPS for review and approval prior to or at the start of the academic year. The student is required to provide progress reports and an end-of-year report of the status and impact of the project. There is also a feedback and comment form that requires a local (non-parent) leader or mentor to complete on behalf of the student. Based on these reports at the end of the year of consistent participation, TPS will issue a signed letter to the student to recognize the progress and impact of the project and the display of character traits. The letter will outline the criteria of the award and create an official record that goes beyond the grade report or transcript. The feedback and comment form will also serve as a possible source of recommendations for scholarship and college, scholarship, or job applications. For U.S. citizens, the service aspect of the recognition will be enhanced by the U.S. President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA) which may be included in the student’s application portfolio.