Counting the cost of self-promoting financial education
Financial education is one of those areas still deeply misunderstood by teachers. Four years ago I founded the PlanB Partnership, a financial advice and inclusion social enterprise, and have not yet had one booking from a teacher or school.
Several private nurseries have had the organisation in to talk to parents about issues such as welfare reform and changes to child maintenance, but we are yet to be asked to support our local state school pupils with lessons on money management. Why is this? Because when the people at the top of Curriculum for Excellence decided that students needed money skills they went with the easy option, the default setting. Now all schools get the same broad-brush and self-promoting presentation from big-name banks and credit card providers.
Real financial education must come from independent workers in the field, not private companies who simply want students to bank with them and take out a loan one day. It needs to have one overarching agenda: to teach young people about key financial problems, and the products and planning techniques that will protect their homes, relationships, health and incomes as they go through life.
Financial education should take students from cradle to grave, instructing them in everything from how a student loan works to drawing up a will and testament. It must be holistic and genuinely reflect the financial sector. If we can teach young people to have pride in frugality, as well as an understanding of how to avoid (and solve) debt problems, we will create fiscally resilient, cash-savvy adults.
Schools need to be more practical and start asking which local agencies offer financial inclusion sessions. Get off the fence, teachers. If you are not an active part of the solution then you are quite possibly a part of the problem.
Director and founder of The PlanB Partnership
Short and tweet
Even if you have exam leave we will always welcome you if you need extra support. Call up to the department this week or tweet...Happy to help.
What I was saddest about leaving school last year was that I couldn't wear my blazer again. I loved my blazer.
Checking through 10yo daughter's bag in preparation for school tomorrow. I find books, a hat, 1 glove and a single sock. How does that happen?!
If you're a teacher-blogger, when you blog do you consider it to be work?
Can someone please tell me why the abduction of 190 schoolgirls in Nigeria is not dominating world news? Horrendous.
People are at their most productive when they see their employment as less like "work" and more like learning: ln.isow.lyfMT64
Bought my first smartphone yesterday, but in deference to [Carol] Dweck am thinking of trading it in for an effortphone.
I think teachers might be genetically disposed to believing in the value of learning styles, despite any amount of evidence.
"Persistent people begin their success where others end in failure." Edward Eggleston
Letters for publication in TESS should arrive by 10am Monday. Send your letters, ideally of no more than 250 words in length, including contact address and phone number, by email to email@example.com or by post to TES Scotland, Thistle House, 21-23 Thistle Street, Edinburgh EH2 1DF. Letters may be edited