ICFE eNEWS #11-10 - February 22nd 2011


Toolkit Includes Ready-to-Use Lesson Plans on Budgeting, Saving, Investing, and
Other Critical Skills That Will Help Students Build Secure Financial Futures

WASHINGTON - A new "educator toolkit" with lesson plans that teachers can use to help students prepare for the upcoming 2011 National Financial Capability Challenge is now available. The Challenge, which will include a voluntary online exam for high school students that begins as of March 7, helps teach young Americans about saving, budgeting, investing, and other important skills critical to building a strong financial future. The highest scoring students on the exam will be recognized through a national awards ceremony in Washington, DC and other high-scorers will receive official award certificates.

"Empowering students with the knowledge they need to make smart financial choices about saving, budgeting, and investing for the future is good for the long-term strength of our economy," said Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. "It will help ensure that young people have the skills they need to achieve financial security, and that will help us continue to build this recovery on a strong and sustainable foundation."

"Our students need to graduate high school ready for college and career if they're going to compete in a global economy," said U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan. "Incorporating financial literacy, through Treasury's online educator toolkit or other significant learning materials, will encourage students to make smart long-term investments, such as preparing to pay for college."

The educator toolkit, which is available online starting today at http://www.challenge.treas.gov/toolkit, covers five core competencies of financial education: earning, spending, saving, borrowing, and protecting against risk. It includes a collection of lesson plans from the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and non-profit organizations that are designed to help teach students important financial skills, such as developing a personal spending plan, balancing checking and savings accounts, understanding the costs of benefits of buying insurance, using credit wisely, minimizing exposure to identity theft, and making smart investments in their future through education.

Additionally, for the first time, this year's educator toolkit will include interactive online lessons and Spanish-language materials. The toolkit can be used not only to help prepare students for the Challenge's online exam, but also for year-round classroom instruction on financial capability.

More than 76,000 students and 2,500 educators in all 50 states participated in last school year's National Financial Capability Challenge. This year's exam will be available online between March 7 and April 8, 2011. Educators can administer the exam to their students at any time during that window. To register for the Challenge, educators should visit http://www.challenge.treas.gov between now and April 8.

In November, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, National Credit Union Administration, and U.S. Department of Education announced a new partnership to encourage schools and financial institutions to work together to increase students' financial capability, access to federally-insured deposit accounts, and savings. And just last month, Treasury launched a pilot program to offer safe, convenient and low-cost financial accounts for the electronic delivery of federal tax refunds to those Americans with limited or no access to traditional banking services.

ICFE eNEWS is available FREE upon request by visiting our Web site and filling out the contact form, with the words "eNews request" included in the comments field. Please pass this eNEWS on to your peers and interested others and invite them to subscribe for free.

Sent by:

Paul Richard
President - Executive Director
Institute of Consumer Financial Education (ICFE)

ICFE - Institute of Consumer Financial Education - ICFE.info - 619.239.1401