The staff at Edison Jr. High can now have coffee, hot chocolate, or tea delivered right to their classroom every Friday morning.
The baristas behind the drinks are actually Edison Jr. High students in Ms. Kristi Geisler's Personal/Community Skills classes. Personal/Community Skills classes teach students to become independent. Students work on skills they will need for everyday life, like reading signs, directions, and recipes, comparing prices, public transportation, cooking, and more.
Through a Rock Island-Milan Education Foundation PRIME Grant, Ms. Geisler was able to start the Eagles Nest Cafe at Edison.
Staff put in their orders and students work on reading those orders, making the drinks, purchasing the needed supplies, and collecting and counting the funds.
"My hope for the students is that they gain some skills that will help them in the future. These skills could include working/ interacting with others, confidence, following multi-step directions, dealing with money, fulfilling orders, and more," said Ms. Geisler.
She's already seen their confidence start to grow, "One of the students included in this program is very shy. Since becoming one that delivers the beverages, she has become more confident in talking to people, especially those she is unfamiliar with."
Students also get to decorate the cup sleeves and deliver the orders to staff.
Ms. Geisler says the student's response to the cafe has been positive.
Tabitha Charlton, a student in Ms. Geisler's class says doing the Eagles Nest Cafe has been "fun."
The staff has enjoyed it too.
Money made goes towards buying more supplies for the cafe and also allows students to take field trips at no cost to them.
Next semester, they plan on adding some type of pastry to the menu.
What does the future hold for the Eagles Nest Cafe? Ms. Geisler says they'll keep taking orders as long as there's interest to do so, "Hopefully this will be going for a long time!"