Barrington High School’s new Business Start-up Incubator is a one of a kind learning environment that will give students a chance to explore entrepreneurship.
It is an example of how the Barrington 220 Educational Foundation is working to help provide innovative programs and projects for Barrington 220 students.
Barrington 220 Educational Foundation began in 1999 and has raised over $2 million that have helped fund projects throughout Barrington Community Unit School District 220.
Next week, the Foundation will host its annual golf tournament at Lake Barrington Shores, 64 Old Barn Road, Lake Barrington, to raise money to fund projects. A live auction is part of the day’s activities. Tickets for the Aug. 26 tournament are available on the Foundation’s website.
The golf tournament is a fundraiser but also a good way for a lot of the donors the foundation counts on through the year to get together and get an update of where we are and what we are doing, Schmitz said.
A few projects the Foundation has done is help fund the Early Learning Center (ELC) at 40 E. Dundee Road; commission a mural by local artist Susan Hanson at the ELC and built climbing walls at Barrington Middle Schools Prairie and Station campuses. This school year the Foundation will again support Barrington 220’s OverDrive Digitial Download Library at Barrington elementary schools.
The Foundation tries to pick projects that will benefit many students, Schmitz said.
The mural is a good example, he said. Hanson is painting a piece, with a theme of the four seasons, at the main entrance of the ELC. Students have been able to see Hanson paint and speak with her, Schmitz said.
“The kids go by it all the time. They are seeing it come to life,” Schmitz said. “Hopefully, it will make a good impact.”
The Business Start-up Incubator is one of the bigger projects the Foundation has undertaken in the last year. BHS students will work with mentors and coaches to learn how to start a business, from coming up with a concept to marketing to how to run a business, he said. This semester, 125 students signed up for the class.
“It’s been very fulfilling and enjoyable to see something that starts as an idea (turn) into something embraced by so many people,” Schmitz said.
The Foundation is working on a project _ BHS Classrooms of the Future_ that will look at how the environment can help stimulate learning. There are no details yet, but Schmitz believes the project will look at technology, modern desks and chairs and different techniques in learning.
Meanwhile, the Foundation continues its effort to raise funds to compete more projects. It also accepts donations on its website.