“I haven’t dropped out of school,” Jenner told PEOPLE on Friday night during the grand opening of the Sugar Factory American Brasserie in Rosemont, Illinois, just outside Chicago. “I still go to school every day.”
Although she continues to be dogged by speculation, Jenner, 17, said she remains a home-schooled high school student. She studies at home with a schoolteacher and has about four months to go until she’s done, she added.
Once she gets her diploma, “I want to keep doing what I do now,” she said. “I love fashion … I have a lot of interests I’m pursuing.”
The youngest of the Jenner/Kardashian sisters did indeed look fashionable. Though temperatures outside were below freezing, Jenner was decked out in a sleeveless, high-necked black Misha Collection open-weave crochet dress, which she paired with Gianvito Rossi high-heeled, off-white sandals with black whip-stitching.
As she walked the red carpet, Jenner showed off two new “couture pops” lollipops she designed with sister Kendall Jenner – the luxuriously named “Black Diamond” and “Gray Sparkle.”
Jenner played host for the grand opening, along with Nick Cannon, who showed up a few hours later to deejay at an after-party.
Fans – Rosemont Mayor Brad Stephens told PEOPLE the first ones started lining up at 3 a.m. – were excited to see Jenner, screaming, cheering and holding signs. Jenner waved and smiled at the crowd, then went inside for a quick sip of an enormous lime-green drink topped with swirly twist lollipops, and a tiny taste of a huge ice cream sundae decorated with foot-high sparklers.
She also chatted and took a selfie with pal Shamari Maurice, 18, who accompanied her from Hollywood Hills. He told PEOPLE that Jenner likes doing promotional appearances because “she feels like she’s following in their footsteps,” referring to her famous sisters.
As for the 10th season of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Jenner said “you’ll have to watch” to find out what happens, but viewers will learn about sister Kim Kardashian trying for another baby with hubby Kanye West, and see mom Kris Jenner in tears over ex-husband Bruce Jenner’s relationship with her former best friend, Ronda Kamihira.
Set to debut in spring, the new season, Jenner told PEOPLE, is “really heartfelt” and contains “a lot of family stuff.”