T-Shirt business created by special education students reopens


The WEGO Tees team.

By Anthony Barrera, Reporter

On March 26, 2021 the special education department opened the beloved t-shirt business called WEGO Tees inside of West Chicago Community High School. After a brief summer hiatus, the shop is back open for business.

The special education department started WEGO Tees to provide special needs students the chance to form skills to prepare them for future jobs and real-world situations. They only make shirts as of right now, but in the coming months, the business is considering making more products, like hats and sweatshirts.

According to Jennifer Walker, Transition Coordinator for the special education department, “I think it’s a great opportunity for our students, I love it because it has our students be involved in the school community as a whole and it gives them the opportunity to learn a large variety of skills such as office work, learning how to communicate with staff and our clients, how to follow deadlines, and produce things in a timely manner.”

As part of their soft opening,  the t-shirt business creates WEGO Pride and other WEGO-themed t-shirts for faculty. The price of a shirt varies with regard to color and design costing from $10 to $25. However, WEGO Tees is not selling t-shirts to students, only to staff at the moment. Demand has been high, and although students and the public cannot place orders yet, they see the value in this important business.

In the words of senior Brendan Prebis, “I think it’s really good for the students to definitely get experience. Most of the time, they feel left out in other activities like that.  That’s really good for them to be part of something in the school.”

Walker explained that WEGO Tees is a great way for special education students to form interests and develop skills for the real world. 

Director Special Education, Leslie Springer, added, “WEGO Tees has given West Chicago Community High School transition students an opportunity to develop and run an inclusive business that provides job training, skill-building, responsibility and so much more. Students have gained confidence, pride in their work, and a sense of true accomplishment!”

WEGO Tees allows special education students crucial dexterity, like office work and how to communicate with customers, in addition to teaching them how to meet deadlines inside of a school setting.