New high school pilot program emphasizes the importance of financial literacy
TORONTO, ONTARIO, March 23, 2017 – Financial literacy starts young and now 29 high schools will be given the chance to prepare their students for the “real world” in a revised Students: get your finances in order! – a pilot financial literacy program project that will stress the importance of financial literacy, entrepreneurship skills, digital literacy, and career/life planning.
The new pilot program was announced today by the Minister of Education Mitzie Hunter. The program aims to give high school students the life-skills needed to thrive in the ever-changing global economy. The timing for this program could not be any better, as many Ontarians continue to struggle with record levels of debt without a plan to get out. The reality is most children learn about financial literacy from their parents/guardians and if their parents do not know how to manage their money – the same lessons will be passed on to their children.
“The announcement today is a step in the right direction. Children need to know about personal finance at a young age. Unfortunately many families treat the topic of money as taboo or a source of conflict. If children develop sound money management skills early – it will help them to fend off living a life plagued by debt,” says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada.
“The reality is when some kids graduate from high school and they enter university – they have no idea how to manage their personal finances and fall prey to a campus credit card and rack up thousands of dollars of debt. A financial literacy program in the school system will help graduates start their post-secondary education on the right foot,” says Schwartz
The new program will launch in 29 high schools across Ontario. Program participants (both students and teachers) will be asked for their constructive feedback by the end of the program so that educators can iron out the wrinkles and officially launch the program in the fall of 2018. Until the program launches province-wide Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada recommends the following financial literacy lessons for parents and students:
Get over your fear
We understand the topic of finances can cause some tension in some families however if you have children, it is important you teach them the importance of financial literacy at an early age or they may end up living a life dependent on credit and in debt without any savings.
Create a shopping list, stick to your list and let your children pay at the cash register in cash. Explain to your child the importance of creating a shopping list and how effective comparison shopping can be. You can also show them the Flipp app and this way they can see for themselves why it is important to stretch your dollars further.
Create a budget together
You don’t need to create anything complex. Remember to keep it simple. You can keep it basic and create a budget for their extra curriculars or for their clothes or toys/video games. The options are endless. Just start the process of creating a budget with your child today and the money lessons they learn from you now, will stay with them for a lifetime.
Save for a rainy day
The cycle of debt can be broken by learning how to save for tomorrow. So teach your child the importance of saving and they will end up having a deeper appreciation for the concept of planning for their future. If you say nothing to them, they will not know why it is important to save. Start the conversation now – don’t delay.
Give them an allowance
It really doesn’t matter how big or small their allowance is. The bigger lesson is teaching your child the cause and effect relationship of money management. This way they can be in control of their money and understand what happens when they spend all of their allowance versus saving it for a rainy day.
About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.:
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance.
For more information or to request an interview with Jeffrey Schwartz, please contact:
Natasha Carr, Community and Public Relations Manager,
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.,
T: 416-915-7283 ext.1041, C: 416-830-4720, F: 416-915-5200, E: [email protected]