Provincial government investing in students’ financial literacy knowledge 

Provincial government investing in students’ financial literacy knowledge pic 1
Education Minister Adriana LaGrange provided, from Edmonton on Wednesday, October 27, 2021, an update on additional steps being taken to support students during the COVID-19 pandemic. (photography by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)

The funding is expected to give schools more choice in financial literacy programming.

The provincial government is investing $5 million into financial literacy programming over three years.

The investment is part of the Alberta at Work initiative. Funding to three organizations will be used to enhance grade three to 12 students’ financial knowledge, and training, inspire students to pursue their interests and contribute to the economy.

“Students are our future entrepreneurs, innovators and creators. Understanding essential concepts such as income, expenses, interest, investing, saving and taxes will set them up for success and help them prosper in today’s changing world. This investment into financial literacy programming will give Alberta’s next generation the much-needed financial knowledge and skills for personal and professional success,” Minister of Education Adriana LaGrange said in a media release. 

“Expanding the investment in financial literacy will mean future generations will benefit from basic financial education. With the right start, we can help young people develop an understanding of personal finances that will contribute to financial well-being throughout their lives,” President of Treasury Board and Minister of Finance Travis Toews said.

With an extension of the 2021/22 grant agreements, Enriched Academy will receive $900,000 per year and the Canadian Foundation for Economic Education will receive $500,000 per year over the next three years. 

The two organizations provide students in grades seven to 12 with financial literacy programming on topics such as money management, budgeting, credit, and student loans. Both organizations will also provide professional learning opportunities for teachers and school leaders, including additional resources to facilitate financial literacy learning, the release said.

Junior Achievement will receive $250,000 per year over the next three years to work with teachers to provide young learners in grades three to six with hands-on, experiential financial literacy programming, work readiness and entrepreneurship education. 

“Junior Achievement is pleased to continue our successful partnership with the provincial government to expand financial literacy programming for students across Alberta. As a non-profit that has been active in the province for over 60 years, we know how valuable our programming is for students, educators, and parents alike. We are thankful for the broad support including financial literacy in the new K-6 curriculum has received and we are committed to supporting students with this and other important life skills education available through our global network with a made-in-Alberta approach,” president and CEO, Junior Achievement Southern Alberta Melissa From said.

The government anticipates more than 360,000 students in grades three to 12 will be reached with financial literacy programming each year. 

“This increased funding will give schools more choice in financial literacy programming and will ensure students have access to financial literacy education now and in the future,” the release said. 

There is an emphasis on foundational literacy and numeracy skills in the renewed K-6 curriculum, along with support to work readiness and entrepreneurship.

Financial literacy will continue to be reflected in the future Grade 7-12 curriculum.

“I’m thrilled that the province understands the need for financial literacy in our young adults. This is so important for personal and career development. It’s essential that they have an understanding of financial literacy whether they are going to start a business, find a successful career they enjoy and can spend a lifetime with, and raise a family in Alberta,” senior wealth advisor, National Bank Financial Angus Watt said.

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