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Schools' shop doing great business
A SHOP that has been opened as a joint project by three schools in Salisbury has proved to be a runaway success.
The new retail outlet has been purpose-built on the Somerset Road campus shared by St Mark’s Junior School, Wyndham Park Infant School and Exeter House School.
Gareth Flemington, headteacher of St Mark’s, said: “It has outstripped all expectations.
“We decided we needed a place for people to meet, and experience tells us people like it when there are refreshments. We also wanted children to do maths-for-a-reason.
“Children spend too long looking at theoretical things and this gives them a chance to put it into practice.
“It’s not unusual for schools to sell work made by children, but this is a real shop and our children will be making things like biscuits or bracelets, selling them and reinvesting.
“They may want to do something like buying strawberry plants for next year and selling the fruit.”
The shop, which was made by a parent who is a joiner, is staffed by parent volunteers and by pupils from Exeter House as part of their life skills programme.
Mr Flemington added: “It has brought everyone together. Some of our parents are on site for 45 minutes during the school run because of staggered opening, and we have great feedback from them.
“Any profits from this will be reinvested for the children to use.
Any opportunity, we will exploit.”
He was particularly pleased that some of the pupils from Wyndham Park had made soup from the vegetables they had grown.
The shop will be used as a window for other businesses, such as a restaurant that is coming in to cook food and advertise itself to the approximately 700 parents who have access to the site.
Thrilled with the shop’s success, Mr Flemington added: “In 20 years of education, very few things have lit my fire like this.”
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