Rockford Public Schools want to make their business academy curriculum more engaging for students.
"Its really kind of a community effort of how can we make business exciting for the kids and also connect them to local colleges as well," East High School Teacher William Rose said.
Schools met earlier this week to brainstorm ways to make classes more fun while still meeting the needs of Rockford.
"We're looking at the curriculum in depth of where we can make changes and fix certain things, but also how we can make it one of the drivers where people want to send their kids to Rockford Public Schools," Rose said.
Rose said one exciting feature that already exists is simulating real-life scenarios. Rose teaches Virtual Enterprise, a class where students set up a mock company. They have a budget, banking account, and paid employees. Students said they're learning a lot.
"Money management and how to run a business and keep everything running smoothly," East High School Sophomore Jackson Pahl said.
East High School Junior Lauren Lepka said they are also learning hands on skills and the importance of time.
"Time management, making sure everything is on time and in place," Lepka said.
Students at East have put these skills to the test and set up the business "Evolve Gaming."
"Its a company where we sell video games, and computers, x boxes, play stations," Lepka said.
Now Rockford Public Schools wants more kids to join in. The virtual enterprise class started last year at East, Auburn, and Guilford. This year students are only enrolled at East and Auburn. The goal is to get high-schoolers at Guilford and Jefferson to take this course as well.
"I think the newest thing is just realize we are going to continue to drive change in Rockford," Rose said.
East and Auburn High Schools will attend Virtual Enterprise Great Lakes Trade show in Michigan Feb. 4 and 5.