Service Learning

Civics Service Learning

Service learning is an effective way for youth to develop the drive and desire to become lifelong volunteers and engaged citizens. Students can participate in activities through outside organizations like Volunteer Fairfax as well as at Rachel Carson Middle School. Service learning at Rachel Carson aligns with the FCPS Portrait of a Graduate that supports the development of responsibility to the local and global community.

Changes to RCMS Service Learning

Beginning in the 2023-24 school year, 8th grade students will earn service learning hours through a meaningful and authentic learning project. Students will earn 7 of the 15 required hours of service during school by investigating issues within the community, creating a plan of action for impacting their community, and engaging in a reflective process to showcase their service learning experience.   These assignments will also count as grades in civics class.  

Students will independently earn their remaining 8 service learning hours in their community based on the theme they select and research. Students may utilize Schoology for ideas about where to volunteer for hours. 

You can find more information in the attached documents below.

23-24 Parent Letter

23-24 FAQ document

Logging Volunteer Hours in X2VOL

To access x2VOL go to For step-by-step instructions for navigating x2VOL, please refer to the Service Learning Folder in Schoology.  

I’m a student. What do I do if…

I entered my hours but they still aren’t verified?

First, check that the email address you used for the sponsor of your hours is correctly entered. If it is incorrect, you will need to delete the entry and resubmit the hours with the correct email. If the email is correct, you may need to politely reach out to the sponsor of your hours to check that they received the verification email. You can also resend the verification link through x2VOL. 

My hours are verified, but they are still not approved. 

First, check that you have entered your hours in a group associated with your Civics teacher. If your hours are correctly entered, you just need to wait for your teacher to approve the hours. Please be patient with your teacher! 

Volunteer Opportunities

8th grade students are highly encouraged to check Carson Student Central on Schoology for a list of organizations and opportunities available.

Information for 7th Graders

Students at RCMS are always encouraged to participate in acts of service, but only service hours completed during the 8th grade school year will count towards the 8th grade project. 

In 8th grade, students will learn about the process of earning the 15 required hours. This year’s projects are related to themes including health and wellness, the environment, child and youth support, social services, and hunger and poverty. 

The 8th grade Civics team is looking forward to working with students on their journey to learning how they can serve their community!