The Money Advice Service’s new ‘Evidence Hub’ has found MyBnk is delivering the UK’s most effective financial education initiative in schools.
The joint University of Bristol project scrutinised dozens of schemes and examined ‘what works’ in financial literacy in an effort to raise standards and outcomes.
MyBnk’s Money Twist programme for 11-18 year olds resulted in increased money skills, abilities and mindsets, according to the study. It covers everything from debt and banking to pensions and careers and was rated higher than any UK bank or state initiative.
MAS also discovered that direct, expert-led and independent delivery of money lessons achieves better results than teacher training or volunteers. We are delighted that the Hub has raised the bar for everyone arming young people with the skills they need to stay out of debt and make informed choices.
Why is it important?
This is the first time that UK financial capability programmes have been independently assessed and rated together. It helps teachers, policy makers and funders make informed decision and refocuses the sectors efforts onto quality, impact and methodology.
In September 2014, financial education was made compulsory for some young people in a limited number of schools in England via Maths and Citizenship. The Department for Education has subsequently announced that only government finance will be GCSE tested – meaning young people will not be tested on things like budgeting, risk, and interest rates.
MyBnk has long expressed concerns regarding timetabling pressures, the absence of extra funding and limited specialist teacher training, all of which may result in schools struggling to become experts and to deliver quality and impactful lessons.
Last week, the Farnish Report recommended that MAS support financial education in schools. MyBnk can deliver what is required on the National Curriculum at a cost of £25-30 per pupil.
Ironically, since money lessons were made compulsory, our sector has had to turn away many schools as demand for our programmes soared. Trusts, foundations and CSR Units are reluctant to fund something that is even marginally statutory meaning young people and teachers miss out on expert-led projects like ours.
The time has come to properly fund effective financial education for young people in schools.
Click below to see who out of 1,000 entrants won and a mini-round up of how we armed 8,000 young people with money skills like budgeting, banking and business.
A big thank you to Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales who have kindly donated some of our prizes – A Samsung Galaxy S5 Smartphone, £100 in starter savings cash and a pair of Ministry of Sound headphones.
We also have headphones for three special participants. Posters have been reviewed by our guest judges, Money Saving Expert himself, Martin Lewis, Rebecca Bolton, Financial Capability Manager at ICAEW and founder & Co-CEO of MyBnk Lily Lapenna. More on that soon.
Once again, huge thanks to all who helped us raise awareness of financial literacy, check here for the daily dispatches from the frontline. Be sure to register your interest for next year’s Global Money Week and get in touch to find out more about our award winning programmes.
Schools and parents can nominate who they think is deserving of the prize, and teachers can nominate themselves. Once a nomination has been verified, teachers have until Friday 10 April to upload their entries.
They accept written lesson plans and learning outcomes as evidence of how the subject has been brought to life. You are encouraged to think BIG with either a classroom video or an audio recording explaining why you deserve to win. The more original your entry, the better.
Christine Farnish has published a report into the functions and funding of the Money Advice Service. Some recommendations directly relate to the work MyBnk does in delivering financial education workshops to young people in schools:
That MAS should invest in promoting financial education in schools, coordinating and quality-assuring existing schemes, as well as bringing resources together for teachers and awarding prize funds to leading and innovative schemes.
That MAS should issue grants and service commissioning to encourage other providers to ‘develop products that fill gaps or provide innovative ways of educating and informing consumers’.
MAS should play greater role in coordinating sector.
That UK Financial capability remains low & praise for debt advice – of which MyBnk is sub-contracted to provide the face-to-face element.
Our initial thoughts:
“Whilst MyBnk is concerned at the central recommendation to cut funding for financial capability rather than reallocate it, there are some encouraging findings.
The call for MAS to support financial education in schools adds to a strong premise backing central funding of expert-led provision and offers a timely reassessment of the state of play for financial capability in the UK.
Farnish’s recommendation, to encourage co-ordination in the sector, could be easily realised by establishing a kite-mark system and database of providers so schools can choose trusted and effective providers. Unfortunately, existing quality marks do not take account of initiatives that are delivered directly to young people. MAS is perfectly placed to provide this framework and improve access to the many quality education materials, financial apps, planners and calculators available at no or low cost. However, we question whether seeking to avoid duplication and share resources amongst competing commercial, state and charitable providers is either feasible or desirable.
The gap is not resources or innovation, it is effective delivery. MAS should not just focus on innovation, gaps and prizes – it could commission and evaluate existing provision including from outside experts, with the objective of reporting back as to what is effective.
The consumer, a young person, widely differs from the adult seeking advice facing immediate financial issues. Young people need to be actively engaged. A point MyBnk has repeatedly made is that teachers are not financial experts and financial experts are not teachers. Whilst teachers can engage, the absence of extra training, evaluation and time restrictions mean ‘teaching to pack’ using off the shelf resources, is highly unlikely to be effective.
Long term solution
Longer term we believe the Farnish report, MAS and the Government misspecify what is needed for ubiquitous, unbiased, relevant and effective financial education. The commercial sector cannot be expected to fund it, the charitable sector cannot afford to. Provision is and should be the responsibility of the school’s themselves – MAS can help move us forward, making sure this happens. MAS should not only consider what is most effective but what can practically be introduced given the pressure on schools. In our view, and that of OECD Pisa study, this is more likely to be relatively short stand-alone provision to fit with the existing structure of drop-down days.
One solution is independent expert-led provision of financial education in schools as recommended by the Centre for Social Justice – this has been proven highly effective by Oxford ISIS Consultants. MyBnk can cover everything required on the national curriculum at a cost of £ 20-25 per young person.
The time has come to properly fund its delivery”.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 377 8770.
Ever wanted to help young people learn how to manage their money and start their own enterprise?
Would you like to set-up your own social enterprise? Or add a new range of educational programmes to what you do?
For one week only, MyBnk is sharing the knowledge and sharing the power of our financial and enterprise education programmes with an intensive week of training for small charities operating outside England to make you: ‘Powered by MyBnk’.
From core subject knowledge and methodology to monitoring and evaluation and delivery, we will show you how to enable young people to live enterprising lives and face their financial future with confidence. We also offer a package of support post-training, including programme assets and updates.
The final day of Global Money Week has seen us taking money outside the classroom and helping older young people.
We made our way to Mears Group where we met a group of boys who were struggling with independent living and not managing to save a lot of their money. Money Works is our intervention style debt programme. This group learnt how to make their own personal budget plans for their futures, found out where most of their money was going and learnt what kind of bank accounts would be best for them to ensure they were able to save each month.
MyBnk takes a different approach to personal finance in Money Works, detoxifying participants relationship with money so they can comfortably think about their futures. One way to illustrate this is showing how easy the concept of saving actually is, when you know what you are doing, like prioritising your outgoings in a jam jar account in order to see how much money you have left over for leisure. It was an effective way of demonstrating how to not run out of money.
“When I have money, it disappears I save a bit but I spend a lot.learn about this for your future when you have to think about things like rent, I know first hand that it’s difficult sometimes to pay rent on time. MyBnk has taught me a lot, I feel like I know how to manage my money better now and I have started to cut down on my spending in order to save more.”Joel, 22, Mears Group
Alongside Mears Group we have been in action across the UK, from Carshalton Boys Sports College in London to Ingleby Manor Free School in the North East, giving teens the chance to start their own business in Enterprise-in-a-Box. We provide ethical products and train them to sell and make their own money! The students had to consider picking a responsible person to keep their money safe and also debated their costing and selling price.
Conisborough College students are one step further along in their first enterprise journey, preparing their market stall in just a few weeks time via our Back My Business programme! From drawing board to product development, we take students on a journey as they plan out their money making idea with real loans and making real profit.
A big thanks to schools, youth organisations and Children & Youth Finance for an amazing Global Money Week here in the UK. There are more round-ups and the result of the Demotivator Competition to come.
This week we have helped nearly two thousand young people in over 40 sessions, special events and 1-2-1 Money Advice Service sessions – but we are barely scratching the surface. The focus now is on delivering quality, high impact and relevant financial education and enterprise lessons to all young people. Exciting developments coming this way!
Day 4 of Global Money Week kick off with a very early yet very exciting bang as we headed down to London Stock Exchange to ring the opening trading bell!
Helping us were students of Mount Carmel Secondary School for Girls and we were also joined by LSE CEO Alexander Justham who praised the “inspirational” initiative, the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and organisers Children and Youth Finance International.
“It’s amazing being here and it makes me think about money in a totally different way. I’m learning too – the theme for GMW is saving, I’ve just found out I spend £700 a year on sweets! I’m making a savings pledge today to cut down.”Samina Ahmed, 13, Mount Carmel – Secondary School for Girls, London.
On the penultimate day of Global Money Week we have been around the country again teaching money life skills to hundreds of young people to help them in their futures.
From The Petchey Academy to an National Citizenship Service group in Cornwall, young people are starting our Enterprise-in-a-Box programme learning how to handle money as they earn it, giving them the tools to start up their own businesses and make real money.
Hundreds of students at Haberdashers’ Aske’s Knights Academy as well as Parkside Academy took part in our Money Twist sessions each creating their own personal budget plans and learning about tax deductions and how payslips work to prepare for working when they are older.
Young care leavers in Lambeth tackled Money Works to learn how to move into independent living. It’s also been very exciting at our youth-led bank, MyBnk-in-a-Box at St Michael’s College, London, where our MyBnkers there are helping their fellow students save, many had set a savings goal for Mothers Day – mums can thank us later!
“I want to save to help myself so I can buy things I want. When you’re older you’ve got to know how to save, you’ll have to pay your own bills so you can’t spend your whole life wasting your money on junk.”Mary, 13, young saver.
Finally at Prendergast Ladywell School we ran our enterprise education programme Back My Business. Young people there are preparing to host their own market place at the end of the month, dealing with real loans and learning all about the importance of correct pricing and making a profit, watch this space!
On top of all this our money adviser has been giving free 1-2-1 Money Advice to young people at Peabody Darwin Court explaining the importance of staying out of debt and teaching important life skills through working with money and the benefit of having a budget plan.
Tomorrow, on the final day of GMW, we will be back out delivering money skills to young people across the country, from bank accounts and budgeting to learning about university costs.
Over Global Money Week, we are featuring guest blogs from key stakeholders, i.e. the people who collectively help achieve financial literacy.
Today we present the thoughts of Rebecca Bolton, Financial Capability Manager at ICAEW Chartered Accountants.
We need to talk about money
Financial education is vital in helping young people to feel confident talking about money. It can help them identify money-related concerns and issues that they should be aware of throughout their whole lives, including the importance of saving to protect their financial safety in future years. Financial education can help young people feel in control of their financial future and empowered to make important life decisions – whether that is in the present or in the years to come.
ICAEW Chartered Accountants work across a wide variety of industries in a multitude of roles but we all at some point have to learn how to have open and honest conversations about money.
These conversations could take many forms. It may be speaking to a client who you are providing personal tax services to, a family business owner who is looking to sell his business and retire, the finance director at a large company who wants to know if he will be able to pay a bonus to his staff this year, or any number of other scenarios.
We support the teaching of young people about money in a practical and pragmatic way, using real-life examples and a realistic, rather than purely theoretical, approach to concepts such as debt and financial risk. This approach seeks to instil confidence into young people, so they can honestly consider their own financial situations and be not only prepared for conversations about money, but also able to make the best decisions for their own circumstances.
Mega Wednesday hit on Day 3 of Global Money Week which saw MyBnk bring money and enterprise knowledge to 450 young people in 12 schools and youth groups across the UK!
Students at Hasmonean School, London, learnt important lessons running their own business in our Enterprise-in-a-Box session. Here, young people are trained to sell a range of ethical products. Our experts emphasised the importance of correct pricing to make a profit and how to handle money so they could begin to run their own social enterprise, for real!
This enterprise education programme showcases a strong sense of money management skills as individuals will have to work in teams to make sure they are pricing their products at a profitable price and they have to work together to make sure the money they earned is being handled properly.
“Some people don’t want to be employed by someone else, they don’t want a normal job that they could be bored in so it’s really important to learn about enterprise at a young age so you can make your own money that you can earn for yourself. I can’t wait to start selling, our team really wants to be the best!”Chava, 13, Hasmonean
We also welcomed 23 students from the Europa International School, Barcelona, who took money and gave it a Spanish twist as they tackled the universal truths about managing cash. Of particular interest was how capital flows between financial institutions and how banks actually make profits. A game of money dominoes, matching the terminology to the explanation, also broke down the language barriers to something that affects us all, where to save cash for the best returns.
Elsewhere, we were teaching hands on practical skills via Money Twist programmes to young people from Treviglas College, Heartlands High and Saltash in Cornwall. There were debt intervention and budgeting Money Works sessions at WILD Project Cornwall and young care leavers in Lambeth and Back my Business enterprise challenges at Bishop Challoner.
On top of that our money adviser has been giving free 1-2-1 Money Adviceto young people at the Kipper Project, helping them to learn about taxes & reading payslips properly.
Tomorrow we help ring the opening bell at London’s Stock Exchange!
Over Global Money Week, we will be featuring guest blogs from key stakeholders, i.e. the people who collectively help achieve financial literacy. Today we present the thoughts of Syed Kamall MEP for London.
Where did you get your financial education?
I got it from my parents.
I remember going round to a friend’s house who had got a brand new train set for Christmas and always used to get the latest toys. I used to say to my mum, “why can’t we be like that?” She would reply, “Look at the house we live in. We could buy you everything you wanted, but we then wouldn`t be able to afford this house. We have to prioritise”.
I remember my dad paying off our mortgage and him saying, “I am no longer in debt.” When I bought my house, my friends said to me, “Why have you only bought a three bedroom house? You can afford something bigger”. I replied, “I can afford to but it would take me much longer to pay off”.
I think what they taught me was the difference between knowing what you can actually afford compared with the amount of money you can get access to. This is a real problem today, when credit is so easy to get hold of.
How important is MyBnk?
It’s really important that we have financial education, the problem is how do you deliver it?
Teachers are incredibly busy with lots of demands on their time. So, how can you squeeze in another bit into the curriculum? What is really valuable about MyBnk is that they go into schools and teach financial education in a fun, hands-on way. The children don`t even realise it is a lesson!
So, in one school I went to with MyBnk, they actually ran a bank. They ran the whole range of services from greeting people to signing people up, taking deposits and setting up accounts. I asked the students “why are you saving?”
Everyone could answer the question, from saving for university to one generous child who was saving to take her mother on holiday! The important point was that they didn’t have an`easy come, easy go`, or `it will just be there`, or `money grows on trees` attitude towards money. Many politicians could learn from these children!
If a bit of financial education encourages some of those children to manage their money responsibly, or even go on to start their own business, then I think we`ll all be better off.