Community Problem Solving
Community Problem Solving (CmPS), encourages students to become agents of change and engages students in their communities. Students explore an existing problem in the school, community or region.
Students in both team and individual Community Problem Solving apply problem-solving strategies and skills to real-world problems. Community Problem Solving teams can be composed of as few as three or four students or as many as 100. Several schools might work together on a community project. For assessment, projects are grouped in categories such as civic and cultural issues, education, the environment, health concerns and human services.
Community Problem Solving is a vehicle for both community service and service learning. After identifying and understanding the problem situation, teams and individuals use the FPS model to generate ideas, develop an action plan and implement the plan. Students develop and demonstrate teamwork skills and sef-confidence in this outcome-based component allowing them to implement a wide range of solutions presented to a real audience.
Community Problem Solving bridges the gap between school and the real world. At the 2008 International Conference (IC), NC FPS's State Champions, the RESPECTATORS from Smith Academy coached by Heather Lynch, took 6th place globally. The team noticed that many negative behaviors stem from respect issues among people; therefore, the RESPECTATORS chose to investigate the roots of disrespect and educate others to bring about positive changes in behaviors. They created presentations about friendship, fights, gossip, and respect for our sixth grade students. They researched, organized, and implemented a middle school Challenge Day to help all students demonstrate team building skills and encourage respect for other cultures. Through their activities, they changed how their school and community values respect towards others.
NC FPS's 6th grade CmPS team from Waddell Language Academy coached by Heather Lynch were our 2015 State Bowl champions and attended IC. They found that one-third of their day is impacted by distracted drivers. In response, the STOP TADing (Texting and Driving) project was created by TEAM DRIVE to educate drivers about the dangers of distracted driving. TEAM DRIVE created a website, social media accounts, YouTube channel and PSAs which played on national radio. They also participated in April’s Distracted Driving Awareness month and published video games for drivers to experience distracted driving risks firsthand.