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Service & Social Justice

Service opportunities represent a vital part of the St. Patrick's curriculum, inviting students to engage with the larger world and develop an understanding of the complex challenges and needs of our local, national, and global communities.

These opportunities are numerous and varied, they reflect the core values of our mission and Episcopal identity in order to:
  • inspire a spirit of compassion and understanding,
  • respect the dignity of all human beings,
  • engage in civic responsibility and global citizenship,
  • view challenges to the human family from multiple perspectives,
  • develop a lifelong commitment to service and making a difference in the world,
  • promote empathy and build character, and
  • develop a social justice framework.
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Service Learning Curriculum


At St. Patrick's, we live our values of service, equity, and social justice and we encourage community members to recognize that we are part of something much larger than ourselves. Our four-decade partnership with St. Etienne de Bateau in Haiti, our summer enrichment program with Horizons Greater Washington, and our participation in the Grate Patrol program are hallmark programs of our school community.

Community Service Clubs

The Community Service Clubs are a backbone of the annual Gifts for Good, St. Patrick's alternative holiday gift fair. Founded in 2006, the fair reflects St. Patrick’s commitment to serving local and global communities. Students, teachers, and parents work together, in the true spirit of the holidays, to offer token gifts in exchange for donations to organizations or causes that are important to them. 

Through our purpose-built campus, the MacArthur Community Service clubs grew out of St. Patrick’s commitment to community service and the MacArthur service learning and health curriculums. Throughout the school year, the clubs study social issues, which provides context for their service and fundraising efforts.

Grade 7 students learn about service during a trimester long class. Students learn about and explore ways to address genuine community needs through academic and skill based knowledge. Areas of focus have included the marginalization of both the elderly and people with disabilities.

All three grade levels incorporate the service learning steps of: investigation, planning, action, reflection, and demonstration in creating any school year fundraising or for Gifts for Good booths. Past booths and social issue causes have included: St. Etienne’s medical drive, “You Can Make a Difference” food drive, Covenant House, Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, Honor Flight, Habitat for Humanity, Girls Rising, St. Baldrick’s, Foundation, United for Puerto Rico, International Orangutan Foundation, DC Diaper Bank, Sasha Bruce House, and The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

These and similar experiences cultivate in our students, and across all members of our community, looking beyond our own needs, taking thoughtful, positive action to improve our world, and habits of service.