An opportunity for innovative leaders in education

Why Primary School?

Primary School provides a great opportunity for change creation. The combination of having one teacher with a constant and familiar relationship with pupils, close parental and community contact with the schools, combined with the open minds of 11 and 12 year olds make it the ideal time to introduce new concepts. The competitive elements of education which are so evident at second level have not yet kicked in and pupils view each other as equals.

Radical Societal Change

There is a superb opportunity for nationwide adoption of an initiative that will change lives forever. There are 4,200 primary schools on the island of Ireland with over 170,000 pupils in senior classes. There has never been a nationwide entrepreneurship programme with a real connection to entrepreneurs. But this is something we can impact today.

What does JEP cost? Who pays?

The Junior Entrepreneur Programme is available free of charge to every primary school in every county on the island of Ireland. The programme is supported by programme partners Enterprise Ireland and Tweak.com and media partner RTÉ. Our key objective is to ensure that every primary school pupil in Ireland has the opportunity to access to entrepreneurial learning.

An Academically Approved Approach

JEP has been developed in collaboration with Mary Immaculate College of Education in Limerick. The programme materials have also been reviewed and welcomed by the Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA). Every step of the programme mirrors strands of the primary curriculum and the links are clearly set out in the Teacher’s Guide. This means the pupils are learning new life skills while covering their core subjects in a fun and engaging way.

How To Get Involved

Registration for the 2022/2023 Junior Entrepreneur Programme is now closed.

The Support You’ll have

Schools that sign up for the Junior Entrepreneur Programme will have the opportunity to take part in something truly innovative and exciting and will be supported throughout. In addition to a comprehensive classroom kit, teachers will be supported every step of the way by; online teacher orientation; weekly webinars; online and telephone support from the JEP project manager. Once signed up, participating teachers will have access to online orientation before they start the programme. This will include a walk-through the administrative requirements as well as a step-by-step guide to running the programme.

JEP Classroom Kit

The JEP Classroom Kit is provided to every class participating in the programme. This kit includes a step-by-step Teacher’s Guide to the programme and contains all the tools that participating teachers will need to successfully facilitate the JEP in their classroom. The guide combines instructions for fun team building and brainstorming games along with activity sheets and posters for each lesson. The JEP Classroom Kit has been designed to foster the imagination of participating pupils and provide real focus to their new endeavour.


  • English Language
  • Irish Language

Curriculum links for Northern Ireland and the UK are available on the Teacher Portal.

Kits are provided to participating classes following sign-up.

JEP Teacher Orientation

Once registered online, participating teachers can access the password protected teachers area. We continuously update our orientation on the basis of feedback from participating teachers and also curriculum updates. The links between JEP and the primary school curriculum are clearly highlighted and sample JEP projects are available. The orientation programme is designed with interactive learning assessment which will give the participating teacher the confidence to successfully carry out the programme in their class.

What are the learning benefits?

The principles of the Primary School Curriculum and utilises an integrated teaching and project-based approach to teach many strands of the curriculum. JEP is a very meaningful way of teaching aspects of literacy including oral language development, reading and comprehension as well as writing purposefully.

This innovative programme helps participating pupils to develop a number of skills including presentation, literacy, writing, drawing, technology, financial skills, consumer awareness, storytelling, listening skills, creative thinking, problem-solving, collaborative skills and team work. Participating pupils engage in real-life applications of their mathematical skills as they undertake data collection, problem solving, and presentation of data and profit and loss. The JEP programme is most closely aligned with English, Mathematics and Social, Personal & Health Education (SPHE/PSHE) Curriculum in Ireland and the Personal Development & Mutual Understanding (PD&MU) in Northern Ireland, encouraging children to make decisions, negotiate, resolve conflict and connect with the wider world. Depending on the focus of the project, there may also be a strong focus on Arts Education, History, Geography or Science. There is also potential to link with Physical Education through the team building games. JEP instills a new interest and focus on learning and teaches invaluable skills in a real-life context that motivates and inspires the pupils.

Teacher and Pupil Recognition

Teachers who complete the JEP online orientation and deliver JEP in the classroom are awarded a certificate in recognition of their achievement. Pupils who complete the programme receive a certificate of achievement. Schools receive the JEP flag to proudly signal their entrepreneurial activity to the community. When a class completes the programme and submits their project, they receive JEP teacher and pupils certificates and a wall plaque to recognise their achievements. Classes may also enter the JEP Awards at the end of the programme.

Entrepreneurs –
at the heart of the Irish economy

Entrepreneurs are at the economic heart of Irish society. They conceive creative products and services used by customers at home and all over the world. They create employment, wealth, and are big contributors to the national exchequer.

They’re not always running multi-national companies. Some are people who’ve chosen to work for themselves and have a lifestyle which is independent of an employer. A self-employed person makes a significant contribution to the economy – and to society.

Entrepreneurs have become applauded in Irish society as their passion, inspiration and hard work are celebrated in programmes like the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and RTÉ’s Dragons’ Den.

There is no clear formula to becoming an entrepreneur – except perhaps inspiration, hard work and competence – and sometimes getting thrown in the deep end, but there are learned skills that help make the process a bit less risky.

Most entrepreneurs enjoy a challenge. These are the people who say “why not?” and often end up changing the way we all do things in our everyday lives.

It’s natural that we would want to nurture this spirit in our young people. And what better place to start than in primary school – long before exam pressures have begun.

Macdara De Paor
Scoil Maelruain Senior

Ciara Fagan
Greystones Educate Together National School

David McAndrew
St. Matthew’s National School

Laura Dillion
St. Mary’s National School

Andrew O’Regan
Lawrencetown National School

Emma Barriscale
Sacred Heart National School

Caitriona Hogan
Scoil Maelruain Senior

Ellen Costigan
Duleek Girls National School
Síle Nic Coitir
Scoil Mológa
Donna Treleaven
St. Fintan’s National School
Maeve Callanan
St Marys Boys National School
Karen O’Regan
Scoil na mBuachailí