More school students now have access to vital financial education, with over 560 schools across Australia registering for the Talk Money financial education program which launched this past February.

The program, done with Ecstra Foundation, is designed to help Australian school students learn money lessons for life, be confident talking about money and make informed financial decisions.

With 100,000 school bookings confirmed, the program will deliver a total of 3,130 workshops by the end of the school year. Registrations for Term 1 and 2 2023 are already strong.

Ecstra chief executive Caroline Stewart said ensuring better access to quality, independent financial education is crucial.

“In a challenging economic climate with increasing concerns about cost of living, providing young people with foundational money skills at key life stages will help them now, and prepare them for their financial futures.”

Pilot evaluation data collected from February to July shows the positive impact the program is making on students’ money attitudes and skills.

“Feedback from students and teachers has been very positive – 88 per cent of teachers say their students’ knowledge of money improved after attending the workshops,” Stewart said.

“Students report increased knowledge and positive intentions on topics including savings, spending influences and managing tax and super.”

The facilitator led workshops are offered in person or virtually for Years 5-10, are aligned to the Australian curriculum and the National Consumer and Financial Literacy Framework, and provided at no cost to schools.

Ecstra chair Paul Clitheroe said the importance of talking to kids about money and helping them to develop good financial habits early in life has been a consistent theme throughout the many years he has been championing financial literacy in Australia.

“Talk Money is an invaluable initiative because it provides our teachers, who already are so busy, with the tools to engage students with practical money and finance concepts that can also be shared at home.”

Talk Money has been developed in collaboration with a financial education advisory group, including representatives from financial counselling, youth mental health, teachers and academics.

Australian Association of Mathematics Teachers CEO Allan Dougan said financial literacy is an essential part of young peoples’ learning and something that “we have to get right”.

“It is embedded in the Australian Curriculum in multiple areas including maths and economics,” he said.”

“Offering external programs means schools and teachers can choose the resources and workshops that best fit their scheduling and student needs. These programs are a great opportunity for teachers to build their confidence in this complex area.”

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