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Koch nonprofit providing ‘liberty-based’ course for HS students

LA School Report | July 17, 2014



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HUFFINGTON-POST-IconVia Huffington Post | by Christina Wilkie

In the spring of 2012, Spenser Johnson, a junior at Highland Park High School in Topeka, Kansas, was unpacking his acoustic bass before orchestra practice when a sign caught his eye. “Do you want to make money?” it asked. The poster encouraged the predominantly poor students at Highland Park to enroll in a new, year-long course that would provide lessons in basic economic principles and practical instruction on starting a business.

Students would receive generous financial incentives including startup capital and scholarships after graduation. The course would begin that fall. Johnson eagerly signed up.

In some ways, the class looked like a typical high school business course, taught in a Highland Park classroom by a Highland Park teacher. But it was actually run by Youth Entrepreneurs, a nonprofit group created and funded primarily by Charles G. Koch, the billionaire chairman of Koch Industries.

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