The Growing Leaders business elective is open to 7th and 8th grade students at Willard Middle School. Students gain hands-on experience by growing, cooking, and selling bi-monthly meals to the public.
Students are involved in all aspects of the business, from recipe development and testing, to setting a financial goal and marketing.
The student-run business, which was born out of necessity due to district budget cuts in 2013, has proven that students can thrive when given ownership, autonomy and real-world goals.
In our 2014-15 pilot year, we endeavored to raise $20,000. Astoundingly, our students exceeded all expectations and generated over $30,000 in funds to help sustain the program.
In the 2018-2019 school year, the student business made over $75,000.
All proceeds from the meal sales go directly towards supporting Growing Leaders programming.