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Is financial education working in schools?

 

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MyBnk has submitted our response to The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Financial Education for Young People’s call for evidence on the effectiveness of financial education in schools.

Back in September 2014, money lessons became compulsory in England’s state maintained secondary schools, up to GCSE level, through Maths and Citizenship. Since then, awareness of things like budgeting and tax is up and more young people than ever are learning about money.

However, exactly what pupils are learning and how, varies widely across schools. Concerns around quality and tokenism are abound. Outcomes like understanding risk and debt are not tested and teachers are not trained in the specialism. This is against a backdrop where 39% of teachers feel financial education, as it is currently taught, will make no difference to how young people see monetary issues (Nationwide, 2015).

We highlighted:

  • Barriers for schools and teachers to deliver effective money lessons.
  • Evidence on how MyBnk programmes increase young people’s financial capability.
  • Quality, direct delivery. Our flagship schools programme, Money Twist, has been given the UK’s highest effectiveness rating of any youth financial literacy project by the Money Advice Service’s Evidence Hub. They also rated online resources for teachers and financial service schemes lower than our face-to-face independent expert-led provision.
  • Proper funding for effective teaching. Since money lessons were made compulsory, the sector has had to turn away many schools as demand for our programmes soared. Trusts, foundations and Corporate Social Responsibility Units are reluctant to fund something that is even marginally statutory, meaning young people and teachers miss out on what works.
  • Absence of measurement.  There is presently no large-scale project that is specifically testing the effectiveness of programmes that build financial capability per se. The Department for Education has also withdrawn the UK from worldwide PISA comparison testing.

Many schools are delivering high quality financial education, often with the help of our trained and tested Education Officers and programmes. Last year we worked with hundreds of schools and tens of thousands of young people. We hope our evidence, experiences, and insights can help inquiry head, Suella Fernandes MP, and Chair of the APPG, Mark Garnier MP in their study.

Please see our full response, here.

Team MyBnk

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