Whizz-kid sixth formers at Lancaster Royal Grammar School have been showing off their business skills by taking the virtual stock exchange by storm.
Two teams of lower sixth formers reached the national semi-finals of the IFS Student Investor Competition, in which they managed a virtual stock exchange investment of £100,000 and were up against teams from the UK’s top state and independent schools.
They are currently in the tough semi-final stage which takes the form of a four week online challenge, in which teams predict the value of certain stocks week by week.
Not to be outdone, another group is investing real money.
The boys were recently ranked top in the Shares4Schools Competition with their investment of £1,500.
They are in the top-10 nationally and are heading towards the final in May.
Lower sixth former Cameron Peters reached the national final of the TARGETCareers School Leavers Challenge, an online business competition which tests students’ work readiness, while a team of upper sixth economics students won the regional heat of the Target Two Point Zero Bank of England and The Times Interest Rate Challenge.
Another team reached the North West heat of the National Business and Accounting Competition run by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
Head of business and economics at LRGS, Russell Wareing, said he likes to broaden the horizons of pupils by arranging an array of extra enterprise-related projects – but not, he says, because they are necessarily all heading for careers in the city as accountants or stock brokers.
However, Mr Wareing added: “These activities give the boys many valuable opportunities. Yes, they enjoy the competition and they’re a chance for them to test themselves on the national stage.
“But it goes much further than that – projects like these go way beyond the text book and really broaden the students’ experiences.
“They learn valuable workplace skills, such as public speaking, working as a team and resolving disputes.
“As well as being invaluable lifelong skills, these are great additions to their UCAS applications and CVs.”