The second instalment in our Enterprise in… My Local Authority series takes us to Renfrewshire where Raymond Kane tells us about the amazing enterprise work going on in schools throughout the area and how you can get involved…
SES: What is your role within Renfrewshire Council?
RK: Children’s Services, Development Officer.
SES: Can you tell us about some of the enterprise projects going in schools across Renfrewshire?
RK: There are too many to mention… however here are some:
Ferguslie pre-5 Centre won a COSLA silver award for its work with the local community and West College Scotland in transforming wasteland into a profitable fruit and veg business.
Kirklandneuk PS and Arkleston PS won the Renfrewshire chamber of Commerce ROCCO award for Enterprise in Education for their Kick Start fitness and intergenerational health and wellbeing service in 2014 and 2016, respectively.
Some other examples, to name but a few, are:
St Anne’s PS
Primary 1 hosted a Daffodil Tea party to raise funds for Marie Curie charity. Planned activities through an IDL approach include:
- Visit to local bakery to discover more about production and distribution of bakery products.
- Market research to inform choice of cakes provided at Daffodil Tea party
- Budget awareness to inform purchasing of cakes
- Marketing/communications to inform parents/carers and local community of event (posters, newsletters, letters of invitation)
- Production – using knowledge, understanding and skill in food technology, mathematics, literacy and HWB to create healthy cakes.
- Design and production of classroom decoration
- Design and production of daffodil flower pots for sale
- Budget awareness to inform purchasing of daffodil flower pots
The children in Primary 4 created their own business manufacturing and selling chocolate and sweet products. Following the reading of Roald Dahl’s ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’, the children highlighted the opportunity for the class, as a group, to form a business and manufacture chocolate products to be sold to their peers at school. The business was set up formally, with the children highlighting the roles required in the running of a business, applying and interviewing for these posts, and then working in role to decide which tasks needed done and in which order.
The children sought support in ensuring health and safety standards were met and maintained, they visited a local chocolate factory to gain a further insight into the manufacturing process, and then set to work on inventing, reviewing and then manufacturing their products for sale. They investigated the best ways to market their products, and then ran an advertising campaign in order to promote the business. They then looked at product margins in order to decide on prices for the products and finally sold the products to their peers in school.
Our Lady of Peace PS
Our Lady of Peace Enterprise Committee is promoting a ‘can do’ attitude through participating in regular enterprise projects. The aim is to build and nurture the concept of enterprise in order to fully equip the children with the skills, confidence, understanding and creativity needed for their future working life.
Starting with a donation of just £10, the committee children took overall responsibility for the planning and decision making of their first project. They bought ice poles and sold them throughout the school. Motivated by the success of their first ‘real life’ project, they decided to use the profit made for further investment and a Valentine Gifts shop was set up in February. With advice and guidance from the teacher and head teacher, the young team from primaries 5, 6 and 7 worked collaboratively to make their projects work. The children loved advertising, gift wrapping, managing the finance, setting up the shop display and selling gifts. Stock sold out in two days!.
Gryffe High School
Pupils take part in a collaborative enterprise activity to customise mugs for family and friends. This activity provides a context for pupils to learn about the business process while giving them an opportunity to develop administrative and entrepreneurial skills. Each S1 class forms a company where pupils apply and are allocated a role. A manager is appointed to oversee teams of Designers, Varnishers, Administration Assistants, Packagers, Labellers and Quality Controllers.
- Pupils work together to create and distribute customer order forms before recording orders received.
- Pupils produce and quality assure mugs to guarantee that they met the customer specification before packaging and labelling.
- Admin Assistants keep an electronic record as orders progress through the production process.
Feedback received from pupils/customers is positive. Project has been extended to include Tech Dept. – pupils use desktop publishing skills to design packaging for the mugs. Pupils individually research and nominate a charity of their choice. Each class decides on their preferred charity before the overall S1 charity is agreed.
Others available on request.
SES: Why do you think enterprise is important to education? And how do you feel it supports wider policy agendas like DYW?
RK: Enterprising activities provide opportunities for young people to demonstrate the depth of their learning and to provide evidence of their skills development. Any activity which has an enterprising element presents an opportunity to put classroom learning into a world of work context. The focus shifts from seeing and listening to thinking and doing. In these situations, there is a level playing field and young people can really show you what they are made of. The results are frequently astonishing as young people demonstrate skills in communication, team-working, customer awareness and problem-solving.
SES: How does enterprise activity help schools meet the careers standard?
RK: The pathway to success is not linear and everyone can take a different route to achieve his/her goals. Enterprising activity provides young people with an opportunity to reflect upon their strengths, areas of interest and how to achieve their potential. By trying different roles and even applying for positions in enterprise teams, young people are already preparing themselves for the world of work and expectations around the recruitment process.
SES: Do you engage with other organisations to help with the delivery of enterprise activities? If so, could you tell us about some of them?
RK: Renfrewshire council engages with local business to provide business mentors for young people. Our very successful Renfrewshire Schools’ Dragons’ Den process also links local business with enterprises in schools to help get them started. A number of schools take part in the Micro Tyco challenge and the University of the West of Scotland is very supportive of schools wishing to participate in enterprising activity. The S6 Young Enterprise Company programme is very popular in Renfrewshire and has brought great success to schools in the area.
SES: If a school wants to take part in enterprise activity in Renfrewshire, how do they get involved?
RK: School staff in Renfrewshire are adept at sharing practice and know that they can rely on support from colleagues when it comes to ideas and overcoming barriers to getting started. Schools can also receive guidance from the local authority and, where possible, receive funding to kick start projects. If schools have any questions they know that they can contact me directly.