January 31, 2012
Niyal Curi (left) and Justice Owens present a marketing plan for fictional Babytime Expo to teacher Joe Parone during their business class at Payson High School.
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Joe Parone casually perches at the edge of a table set up for interviews in the Distributive Education Club of America (DECA) classroom on the campus at Payson High School (PHS). Before him sit a dozen students in the beginning business education class. Later in the day, students will role-play with Parone to create a marketing plan for an expo featuring baby products. The elective offers students real-world opportunities to learn skills and an understanding of the theory behind business. “How does business contribute to society?” he asks the mostly sophomore-level students. “Creates jobs,” said Justice Owens. “Yes. The people I employ spend their money, which helps the town. What else?” asks Parone. The next student mentions taxes. Parone launches into an explanation on how taxes fund schools, roads, and town services. “Are you starting to see the role business plays in society?” he asks. The students nod and murmur in understanding.