Social Enterprise in Schools Program

Why Social Enterprise in Schools?

The Social Enterprise in Schools program is our joined-up approach to working with young people – Primary and Secondary Schools, Colleges & Universities and young people aged 16-24 years in formal education and beyond. It focuses on the future, the next generation, but also neatly embodies our visions that social enterprise is the future. Its empowers young people of all ages by preparing them to take responsibility for their own learning and their own futures, in doing so, allows them to change their lives and those of others at home and abroad.

We believe that entrepreneurs can be found anywhere, at any time and at any stage in their development. This includes within our schools, colleges and universities. That’s why our programs are aimed at encouraging and supporting young people to discover and develop their enterprise, entrepreneurial and employability skills.

One of the most effective methods of enterprise education is through social enterprise. We do this by supporting young people to identify and explore a social issue, and introducing them to social enterprise as a way of finding creative sustainable solutions to that issue. From experience we know that schools that have engaged well with enterprise education often find the broader benefits and impact of social enterprise attractive.

How does it work?

The program is a collaborative, hands on experience showing young people how to run a business. Through this year long program, students learn how to set up and manage their own social enterprise – a business with a social purpose. Most all it helps young people build skills, confidence and links with the community.

The aim of the program is to:

  • Develop an understanding of the social enterprise business model
  • Provide a hands-on experience of setting up and running a social enterprise
  • Support curriculum frameworks by providing practical opportunities that encourage participation to become successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors.
  • Builds enterprise, leadership, numeracy, literacy and creative thinking skills
  • Practical, engaging and inclusive learning suitable for any age and ability
  • Builds on strengths and develops confidence
  • Develops students as responsible citizens with more understanding of social justice and the world around them

What does it look like in a school?

CONNECTED TO THE COMMUNITY: School social enterprises have explicit social and/or environmental aims and their profits are used for this purpose. This can either be locally or linked to a community abroad.

ENTREPRENEURIAL: They have a clear trading activity and are directly involved in producing goods or providing services to a market.

LED BY YOUNG PEOPLE: They are driven and run by students with support from teachers and parents. There will also be an awareness of the social enterprise across the whole school.

DYNAMIC: School social enterprises aspire to make a positive and responsive change to people’s lives.

Why Entrepreneurial learning engages a student’s entire range of talents and results in experiential education that builds leadership, enterprise and employability skills.

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