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Not since the 1960s, when the boom in community service programs was at its peak, has there been such an interest in the idea of young people giving back to their community and learning through volunteer service.Now, some schools are requiring it for graduation, but not without controversy.A 1983 report from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching recommended making 120 hours of community service a graduation requirement for high school seniors.Many programs involve the middle schools as well as the high schools, and a few programs even start as early as kindergarten..pass_color_to_child_links a.u-inline.u-margin-left--xs.u-margin-right--sm.u-padding-left--xs.u-padding-right--xs.u-absolute.u-absolute--center.u-width--100.u-flex-align-self--center.u-flex-justify--between.u-serif-font-main--regular.js-wf-loaded .u-serif-font-main--regular.amp-page .u-serif-font-main--regular.u-border-radius--ellipse.u-hover-bg--black-transparent.web_page .u-hover-bg--black-transparent:hover.

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Maryland's requirement has strong support from Governor William Donald Schaefer and State School Superintendent Nancy S. However, because of vocal opposition from the schools and other groups, the Maryland legislature is expected to try to overturn the state board's regulation this session. Malkus Jr., sponsor of a bill that would prohibit the state board's community service requirement, says he can't predict the outcome.

"We need to put more emphasis on the basics, like math and science, not on these social programs," he says.

A Maryland State Board of Education decision to require community service has met with such opposition that the Maryland General Assembly is expected to try to pass a bill prohibiting it.

A bill in the New Jersey Legislature would require high school seniors to complete 15 hours of service.

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