Community Work Program
At Loomis Chaffee, all students and adults are expected to share responsibility for supporting a better community environment by participating in the community work program. Participation in the work program is considered an integral part of the learning process as it promotes respect for the dignity of labor, as well as providing an experiential opportunity to share knowledge or learn new skills. The work program is one of the school's oldest traditions, dating to the school’s opening in 1914. Mr. Batchelder, the first headmaster, believed that participation in “the useful labor of the school” promoted self-reliance and helped to foster democratic values.
Mission and Goals
The mission of the Community Work program is to provide students with an understanding of the nature and value of work and of a strong work ethic, while working with adults and peers in the community. The mission is fostered by:
• encouraging a positive work ethic that includes punctuality, reliability, initiative, accountability, pride in work well done, and the importance of serving others and one’s own community.
• having students and adults work side-by-side in a realistic job environment that includes multi-aged individuals
• providing instruction in practical life skills
• developing respect for the dignity of labor, an appreciation for various types of labor, and a sense of responsibility to self and others
• Providing leadership opportunities and resources that enhance supervisors’ roles as mentors and teachers
All students and faculty are given work assignments while they are members of the community. Students may complete their yearly work assignment by working nine (9) full working days over summer break, usually done in June. Applications for summer work are available in May.
• Work is assigned for 2 to 3 hours per week. The time varies depedning on the frequency of meetings and the time needed to complete the task. The more taxing assignments generally have smaller time commitment.
• At the end of a each term, students may request a job change, but not all requests for change can be accommodated.
• Jobs are based on the needs of the school and often assigned by experience.
When there are conflicts with other school events such as athletic contests or rehearsals, students and supervisors must notify the work office 24 hours in advance. Failure to do so will result in an unexcused absence, even if the absence is the result of a school conflict. Unsatisfactory work, once a worker has been instructed in standards, will also be considered an unexcused absence.
Expectations of All Workers
Workers and supervisors are expected to be on time, perform assigned tasks to the best of their ability, check-in and check-out of each work session. Dishonesty in expectations is considered a major school rule violation and will be reported to the appropriate dean.