The following roles need to be assigned. The paragraphs describe some of the factors that influence and motivate the character that the student will portray in the role play. The student's goal is to influence the outcome (the board vote). The newspaper reporter role is optional, depending on class size.

President of Educational Management Systems Inc.

You propose to run the high school on a budget of $2.5 million, $5000 for each of the high school's 500 students. Your profit will come from any savings you can make from that $2.5 million. You also want a bonus incentive of $10,000 for every point that student test score averages rise over last year's average. What is your incentive to run the school? What is the incentive to keep students from dropping out? What is the incentive for you to help students do better in school?


You are concerned that some teachers could lose their jobs as EMS, Inc. cuts costs. You are worried that teachers will have to teach the way EMS, Inc. tells them to. The teachers you represent are also concerned about class size; EMS Inc. might put 40 students in a room to cut costs. What other concerns might teachers have?

Board members

School board elections are ten months away. You have promised the voters in your district three things. You want to keep property taxes at the same level as last year. You want to continue to offer the same educational and extra curricular activities. You want to reduce the drop out rate while also increasing student test scores. What are your interests in this decision?

Parents Group 1

You are parents of a hearing impaired child. Your child is doing very well in school but needs special sign language interpreter services that far exceed the average of $5000/ student. What are your concerns and interests in this decision?

Parents Group 2

Your child is very good with computers. The school district promised to buy new computers each of the last two years, but has not done so because of lack of funds. What are your concerns and interests in this decision?

Parent Group 3

Your child is a gifted athlete. Colleges have already sent scholarship information even though she is only a sophomore. What are your concerns and interests?

Members of the Community

The property taxes on your homes and businesses help pay for the high school budget. You also employ some of the students from the high school in your businesses. What special concerns do you have in this decision?

Newspaper Reporter

Your job is summarize the discussion at the board meeting. Try to be objective and don't take sides as you listen and take notes. Be prepared to describe what happened at the school board meeting and how the board made its decision.

Schools for Sale: Economics Lesson