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Teaching Teachers the Ins and Outs of Financial Literacy

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“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”  – Nelson Mandela


To fully appreciate this blog, we must first get real about the state of financial literacy in our country. 

The case for teaching teachers:

Research suggests that children begin developing attitudes and behaviors about money as young as six or seven, the same age most enter their first formal educational setting.  Surprisingly though, only 17 states require high school students to complete a course in personal finance.  According to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, 89% of teachers believe more should be done, but only 20% feel “very confident” to deliver any of the six curriculum topics surveyed.

Opportunity knocking…

In 2015, The North Carolina Council on Economic Education (Winner of the 2018 CEE Council of the Year Award) and Fidelity Investments® set out to change the narrative.  The original vision: Develop a stand-alone financial literacy professional development workshop designed to fully equip teachers with the resources needed to help students appreciate the importance of personal finance.  As the program quickly grew in popularity, so did a desire from educators to further improve their own understanding too.  Insert Jump$tatrt and their acclaimed “Financial Foundations for Educators” curriculum.  This combination of knowledge AND tools was the secret sauce for a lasting solution that continues to inspire financial futures today.  “Teacher Trainings” are now hosted in all 11 Fidelity Investments locations across the United States.

“When we can share our expertise, especially with the community, it’s an authentic way to give back and make a difference.”  – Pamela Everhart, Head of Regional Public Affairs and Community Relations, Fidelity Investments

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Student impact multiplier effect: 

Since inception, the program has reached more than 1,400 teachers and, in turn, 150,000+ students.

I look back at my younger self and I think about what I wish I’d known.  To be able to introduce these concepts to my students means they’re getting a jump start in life.” 

Krista Scarlett, Teacher, Goffstown High School, NH.

With more and more young people acquiring student loan debt, the need for personal finance is more dire than ever.  CEE will continue to play our part and – together with you – help combat those earlier, opportunistic statistics…one deserving student and teacher at a time.

Learn more about our mission and visit our free K-12 teacher website, EconEdLink where you can find personal finance and economic lesson plans, digital activities, videos, webinars, and more.

POSTED: October 11, 2018 | BY: admin

2018 National Economics Challenge QuizBowl Finalists

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Tomorrow is the 18th Annual National Economics Challenge Finals!

Congratulations and good luck to the USA and China teams who will compete in the QuizBowl for the Championship title:

USA David Ricardo Division:

  • Hunter College High School, New York
  • Monta Vista High School, California

USA Adam Smith Division:

  • Lexington High School, Massachusetts
  • Mount Hebron High School, Maryland

CHINA David Ricardo Division:

  • Shanghai Pinghe School
  • Shenzhen Foreign Language School, Team #3

CHINA Adam Smith Division:

  • WHBC of Wuhan Foreign Language School, Team #1
  • Shanghai High School International Division

Steve Liesman, Senior Economics Reporter for CNBC, will serve as the emcee and Raphael W. Bostic, President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta will make a video appearance asking the students questions.

Tune in to see the finalists and the competition live. Here’s the line-up starting tomorrow morning:

Watch live to support your team!

~The National Economics Challenge Staff

PS: We will also be live tweeting throughout day. Follow us: @council4econed and the hashtag #EconChallenge.

POSTED: May 21, 2018 | BY: admin

2018 National Economics Challenge Finalists!

No matter what the industry, it all comes down to knowledge sharing, creativity and economic empowerment. This blog focuses on that intersection.

POSTED: May 18, 2018 | BY: admin

KeyBank Foundation Gives Back to New York-Metro Teachers

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KeyBank Foundation has donated $7,500 to the Council for Economic Education’s New York Center for Economic and Financial Education in support of K-12 financial and economic education in New York-Metro area schools.

The donation will provide professional development opportunities for New York teachers through two in-person workshops and two webinars. The Center will train 130 to 140 teachers who will, in turn, reach approximately 8,600 to 9,600 students. The teachers will receive Continuing Teacher and Leader Education (CTLE) credits for participation in these workshops.

“At KeyBank, we believe it’s never too early to introduce smart money management skills to young people, and help establish a foundation for Financial Wellness,” said KeyBank Market President Joseph Markey. “Giving teachers the skills and knowledge to bring financial literacy into the classroom is a great way to do this, and we are proud to support the initiative.”

KeyBank Foundation’s mission is to support organizations that prepare individuals such as teachers for thriving futures. This grant ties into their mission to support the workforce with the necessary skills, education and capabilities to further advance their professional careers and the futures of the children they serve.

“Currently, only 17 states require high school students to take a course in personal finance and only 20 states require high school students to take a course in economics,” said Nan J. Morrison, President and CEO, Council for Economic Education. “Even in states where requirements and standards are strong, very few teachers feel comfortable teaching financial topics. With KeyBank Foundation’s support, we are able to help close the knowledge gap.”

KeyBank Foundation, the nonprofit charitable foundation of KeyBank, serves to fulfill KeyBank’s purpose to help clients and communities thrive by providing meaningful philanthropic investments that transform lives. The Foundation’s mission is advanced through three funding priorities – neighbors, education, and workforce – and through community service.

KeyBank has 54 branch offices serving individuals, families and businesses throughout its Hudson Valley/Metro NY market.

Representatives from KeyBank will be presenting the check on May 7th at 2 pm at KeyBank’s Tarrytown, NY office.

Further information:

To learn more about KeyBank Foundation’s mission, please visit: https://www.key.com/about/community/key-foundation-philanthropy-banking.jsp

Media and partnership inquiries, please contact April Somboun, Council for Economic Education, Director, Marketing & Communications, 212-730-6727.

POSTED: April 30, 2018 | BY: admin

Exciting new partnership: CEE & Kidfund

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We are excited to announce we have teamed up with Kidfund to make it easier for families to save for their children’s future and college tuition. Kidfund is a socially powered savings app that lets families and friends contribute to the child’s account. The app engages the child in the process so they can understand the power of saving and watch their money grow.

This partnership is a natural extension of CEE’s mission to provide children with the knowledge and tools to create financial stability for themselves and their families. As a result of the CEE and Kidfund partnership, CEE will receive $10 for each new family that opens an account and starts to save to support its mission.

We hope you’ll sign up for your child’s free account today and/or pass along this information to others who you think can benefit from this. And, for a limited time only, families new to Kidfund will receive $5 when they sign up and start saving. The funds are held securely in individual accounts at USALLIANCE Financial. The accounts are completely free (no fee, no minimums), earn 3% interest on the first $500, and are FDIC insured up to $250,000.

 

 

 

To learn more about the partnership and how to download the Kidfund app, please visit: https://www.kidfund.us/cee-partnership

POSTED: April 23, 2018 | BY: admin

Cardrates.com shines the spotlight on our mission and impact

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While standardized tests in our nation’s schools address the topics that we would most expect – math concepts, reading comprehension – what they fail to cover are the real-world skills that students need to be successful after graduation.

This is where the Council for Economic Education (CEE) comes in.

Since its creation just after World War II, CEE’s mission has been to equip K-12 teachers with the tools they need to create a strong financial education foundation for their students. “We provide professional development and resources for teachers,” said Nan Morrison, President and CEO of CEE. “The resources range from lesson plans for the classroom, interactive activities, games, an assessment center, and videos.”  Most of these resources you can find on CEE’s online teacher portal, EconEdLink, which accrues over 1.2 million sessions each year, or you’ll find them in one of CEE’s in-person professional development workshops.

Whether its through EconEdLink, or in-person professional development workshops, webinars or student competitions, CEE has the resources to meet teachers where they are with what they need.

Read CardRates.com full blog post about our impact to date and the programs we offer >>>

POSTED: March 5, 2018 | BY: admin

Financial Ignorance is Not an Option

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BY: RYAN LEUNG, rising senior, Lexington High School and 2016 winner of the National Economics Challenge

If the goal of high school is to prepare students for life after graduation, then most schools in our country are not meeting that standard. While our school system prepares students with the academic skills needed to succeed, there is one glaring flaw: most students graduate with next to no knowledge on managing finances.

Money-management skills are more important than ever to navigate the economic realities of the modern marketplace, yet most states still do not require high schools to offer personal finance classes. In lieu of high school personal finance classes, most teens either learn from their mistakes or look to parents for personal finance lessons. Unfortunately, not all parents are well-equipped to serve as financial models for their children.

To address this growing national problem, a group of students from Lexington, Massachusetts founded Project Finance, an organization to promote financial literacy in high schools. We distributed a survey to all public high schools across the state and found an absence of universally accepted financial literacy standards across the Commonwealth. As such, Project Finance has been pushing for the adoption of financial literacy standards, and in March 2017 successfully requested the State Board of Education to review the Council for Economic Education’s National Standards for Financial Literacy for implementation into the state curriculum. This is only a start; offering a personal finance class in each high school is the necessary next step to prepare our students to become informed consumers, investors and participants in our global economy.

Being financially literate cannot guarantee future success, but the personal and national costs of being financially ignorant are immense. My generation is being academically prepared for life after graduation; it is now time for us to be financially prepared.

 

This op-ed piece was published in the Council for Economic Education’s 2018 Survey of the States.

POSTED: February 15, 2018 | BY: admin

Ohio Government Making Smart Choices

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BY: SENATOR LOU TERHAR, Ohio Senate, District 8

The low level of financial literacy in Ohio (and nationwide) exacerbated the effects of the Great Recession. Ohio is ranked fourth worst in financial literacy of the 50 states, has the sixth highest proportion of college graduate student loan debt and ranks 33rd in average per capita defined contribution retirement funds balance, at just $27,000.

Ohio House Bill 391, passed in 2016 in the 131st General Assembly, was an effort to improve financial literacy in Ohio. The bill provided for $318,000 for Smart Ohio, a program supporting curriculum, teacher stipends and student assessments to deliver professional development to Ohio teachers in grades 1-6, created and delivered primarily by the Economics Center for Education and Research of the University of Cincinnati. An initial pilot project, which provided teachers with training in a solid and proven system, resulted in major gains in the financial literacy of children. The General Assembly was so impressed with the program’s results that continued funding for Smart Ohio was approved by both Houses even in very difficult budget negotiations.

In Smart Ohio’s first year, 500 teachers were trained, impacting approximately 12,500 students. By 2021, it will reach 75,000 students at a cost of $8.48 per student. The continued funding will increase the impact on Ohio student financial literacy capabilities, at a lower per student basis, ensuring that as many students as possible can make mature, informed financial choices that will allow them to prosper in a free market. The legislature’s support of this statewide program reflects a belief that the future of our state lies in the economic and financial literacy of our students. We are proud to support our future leaders in their development of good decision-making skills.

This op-ed piece was published in the Council for Economic Education’s 2018 Survey of the States.

POSTED: February 14, 2018 | BY: admin

A Call to Business Leaders

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By: DAN SCHULMAN, President & CEO, PayPal 

PayPal is committed to democratizing financial services to enable all people to join and thrive in the digital economy. Whether here in the US or around the world, we believe everyone should have access to the affordable, convenient and secure financial products and services they need to improve their financial health, support their families, contribute to their communities, and invest in their futures.

But access is only part of the equation – another critical part is education. Economic and financial literacy is a foundational element to achieving financial health and needs to be included in early education programs. We have seen firsthand that improving the financial health of individuals has powerful ripple effects across families, communities, companies, and economies. And that process starts in the classroom.

Financial inclusion and financial health are problems that we can solve in our lifetimes if we truly understand the causes and challenges, and commit to partnering across the ecosystem to fix the gaps that exist in the traditional financial system. We can make a difference by forming deeper bonds between the public, private, and social sectors to develop new curriculum and educational models that foster and encourage financial literacy and understanding from an early age.

This op-ed was published in the Council for Economic Education’s 2018 Survey of the States.

POSTED: February 13, 2018 | BY: admin