New Volunteer Hours Requirement Leave Dubs Displeased


Caroline Feagin

Back to Square One: The new volunteer requirements for graduation leave many Dubs, including junior Jacob Rodman, having to rethink their plans, adjusting to the new demands.

All students know the requirements for graduation: the credits, the areas of study, and the volunteer hours. Sounds easy enough…right? Well, it seems like some people may be out of luck when it comes to garnering volunteer hours. A new rule introduced at the beginning of the spring semester of the 2021-2022 school year states that volunteer hours cannot be obtained through any school activity. This new rule has caused a lot of grumblings among the student population and disrupted some extracurriculars at North Atlanta.
For a long time, clubs and organizations at North Atlanta offered opportunities for students to accumulate volunteer hours. Environmental Club, Politics Club, Theater Tech, and even team management were easy ways that students could meet the 75-hour requirement and have fun while doing so. However, the new regulations make this impossible to use. Junior Jacob Rodman finds the volunteer requirements to be especially annoying. “The school year is already difficult enough, but this new rule makes it harder to find work,” Rodman said. “Not to mention COVID has limited our opportunities.”
There are other unintended consequences of these new mandates. The soccer team has found it difficult to find students to help as ball-getters. Originally, it was much easier to find students willing to run around and retrieve balls as the game was played; but now it’s almost impossible. “Of course it’s more difficult,” said Varsity Girls Soccer Coach Gregory Baeza. “That was a big incentive for people volunteering, but it shouldn’t affect people who do service for the benefit of the community.”
The drawbacks of these volunteer requirements may raise the question of the rules’ implementation in the first place. It’s important to remember that North Atlanta wants well-rounded and caring young individuals. Requiring students to volunteer in their community helps build stronger relationships and character. It may be tedious but APS is ultimately looking to help develop considerate and thoughtful individuals.
Finding new places to volunteer may seem difficult at first, but there are a lot of opportunities at hand. Operation Feed, LaAmistad, and Hands On Atlanta are just a few examples of the options students can volunteer for to meet the requirement.
The rule change has left many Dubs disgruntled. After all, it’s fine and good to “do good,” but at least give us some credit!