Primary School Enterprise Development Programme 2020

The Monaghan Primary School Enterprise Development Programme led by Monaghan Local Enterprise Office got off to a flying start this year with eleven primary schools from all over Monaghan participating in the programme.  The objective of this programme is to show the students how to set up and run a business of their own.  From idea generation to idea formation, business name, logo design, market research and marketing right through to production organisation and financial planning.

The schools participating in this programme in 2020 included Gaelscoil Ultain in Monaghan, Scoil Colmcille, Blackstaff, Scoil Latnamard N.S. Smithboro, Lisdoonan N.S. Carrickmacross,  St Michaels N.S. Rockwallace, St Michaels N.S. Corcaghan, Edenmore N.S. Emyvale. St Marys Boys N.S. Monaghan, Gaelscoil Lorgan Castleblayney, Drumgossatt N.S. Carrickmacross and St Comgall’s N.S. Clones.

Eilín Connolly, Business Advisor with Monaghan Local Enterprise Office stated, “This is one of my favourite enterprise led projects and it’s a pure delight to see so many fantastic ideas been generated by 5th & 6th class students”.  She continued, “There were many great ideas this year with recycling, tourism, and artistic talents being the main aim of a lot of the businesses being set up”. 

The Local Enterprise Office in Monaghan organised for business consultant; Ms Fionnuala Rogers to deliver four business modules to help with the set up and running of the businesses.  While they only got to enjoy two out of the four organised modules the majority of them had already decided on their business name, designed their logos and assigned many of the roles within the business such as Managing Director, Marketing Manager, Production Manager and so forth.  Some had already developed prototypes and were in the process of carrying out market research to help them refine their products.  However, when the schools closed on the 17th March unfortunately the businesses also had to stop trading. 

In total over 300 primary school students participated in this year’s programme with ideas ranging from products made from recycled materials such as bird feeders from milk cartons, recycled wood and old cups and saucers which was developed by Gaelscoil Lorgan in Castleblayney.  Gaelscoil Ultain in Monaghan under the guidance of their teacher Ms Shannon had set up “fancy Frames”  to capitalise on the Monaghan tourism market.  They decided to take high quality images of famous tourist locations such as Lough Muckno, Glaslough, Rossmore park and Castle Leslie and frame them for selling in tourist locations.  Lots of the students had decided to make recycling the primary focus of their business, creating products such as pencil cases, phone covers, and glasses cases from old unused items of clothing,  Blackstaff N.S. created very unique aprons from old shirts and unused jeans.  Drumgossatt N.S. in Carrickmacross were in the process of establishing their business “Dream Catchers” which were beautifully multi coloured uniquely designed dream catchers for decorating a room.  St Micheal’s in Corcaghan under the guidance of their teacher Ms McElvaney set up a business “Pretty As A Picture”.  This business had already raised their start -up capital and were ready to purchase the raw materials needed to make personalised and decorative photo frames for birthdays and special occasions.

Lisdoonan N.S. had set up their business “Crazy Canvas Company” under the guidance of their teacher Mrs Burke and had earned €231 before the schools closed on 17th March. This business created hand painted original canvases and had already received orders for 50 canvases when the decision was made to keep the schools closed until September.  However showing their true community spirit and empathy with their local nursing home residents, the general manager, Maddie Wilson suggested to the group, to create a canvas  “to put a smile on the staff and residents faces to show them that they are not alone and to show them we care” . Together with her team, Production Manager; Sophie, Marketing Manager; Natalia, Sales manager; Cian, and Financial manager; Madison they set to work on their project.  Every team member showed excellent leadership qualities and the entire class got involved and came up with ideas and suggestions to help with the creation.  The finished product was presented to the residential unit of Castleross on Tuesday 16th June in the hope that it will bring much needed joy to the staff and residents.   

Primary Schools Group Pic 2020 Primary Schools 2020

The Local Enterprise Office Monaghan is dedicated to nurturing youth enterprise throughout the county and to showcasing the entrepreneurial spirit that exists in our Co. Monaghan schools. By making students aware of what it takes to make a business, we aim to inspire the next generation of brave Irish entrepreneurs.