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Pupils at Bristol’s Frome Vale Academy are enjoying some unique lessons in responsibility and entrepreneurship by running their own school shop.

Frome Vesco is a wholly student-operated convenience store. Designed and named by the school’s talented pupils, Frome Vesco is now open for business, offering a wide array of goods tailored to meet the needs of pupils.

Located within the academy, Frome Vesco is stocked with essentials ranging from books to stationery, providing a convenient shopping experience for pupils. What sets Frome Vesco apart is not just its products, but also its unique operational model. The store is entirely managed and operated by pupils, helping them to evolve their own sense of responsibility and business.

It also gives pupils a chance to spend their Penguin Pounds, a bespoke school currency which can be earned by carrying out jobs within the academy. The store is open twice a week at break time.

Pupils in charge of the shop are then expected to do a weekly stock check and report this to the principal so stocks can be replenished.

Pupils can earn their Penguin Pounds by applying for jobs including first aid monitors, lunch trolley monitors, play buddies and recyclers. Initially they need to earn Frome Vale citizen cards for good behaviours and carrying out their jobs. When they have 10 Frome Vale citizen cards, they can convert them to one Penguin Pound.

This initiative is teaching pupils the importance of working hard, spending and saving wisely, but more importantly about the power of teamwork and collaboration with their classmates.

Jan Saunders, Principal of Frome Vale Academy, said, “This is the next step in providing children with the opportunity to understand commerce and develop skills that replicate those in the real world. It is also a natural part of providing an opportunity for children to spend the hard-earned Penguin Pounds.”