The founders of co-working giant WeWork have announced plans to launch a new type of school for young children focusing on the future of entrepreneurship.
Piloting the education initiative, “WeGrow”, is WeWork founding partner and chief brand officer Rebekah Neumann, who revealed earlier this month her intention of opening the first entrepreneurial school in America’s next fall season in Chelsea for children ages three through nine, adding ages two and older the following year.
Future students would spend one day at a 60-acre farm, acquired by Neumann in 2016 and the rest of the week in a classroom near the WeWork’s Manhattan headquarters, where they get lessons in business from both employees and entrepreneur-customers of WeWork.
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In an interview with Bloomberg, Neumann said the school would be open to everyone from WeWork members, employees, and local communities. Multiple scholarship programs will also be available.
“I am continuously blown away by how evolved children are, how far ahead of us they are in so many ways. They are natural humanitarians, entrepreneurs, and artists. They are in touch with the magical, that thing that is greater than any one of us, and they grow — every single day —physically, intellectually, and spiritually,” she said.
“Through better understanding their passions and the ways they can use their gifts to help others, children will grow as self-aware, empowered, compassionate creators. These are the future pioneers of WE.”
Bjarke Ingels Group was approached to design the school facility, with a concept that sought to “undo the compartmentalisation often found in traditional school environments and reinforces the significance of engaging kids in an interactive environment”.
Modular classrooms, tree houses, digital portals and a vertical farm were incorporated to promote an inclusive and collaborative teaching environment.
“Curriculums will be created around meaningful local cultures and environments so that learning can be hands-on and experiential. We will focus as much on the growth of our children’s spirits as we will their minds,” Neumann said.
“We are passionate about the opportunity to bring families together as parents and children work and learn together around the world.”
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