Money

The first financial education textbook is heading into schools

3,400 state-funded schools will receive 100 copies of Young Money and Martin Lewis' ‘Your Money Matters’ while it will also be available for free online

A female high school age student is sitting at a desk with her peers working on a math assignment during class.

Financial education has been on the national curriculum in England since 2014 – but now is the first time that a dedicated textbook on the subject will be heading to schools.

Charity Young Money is sending out ‘Your Money Matters’ to 3,400 state-funded schools in a bid to bring 15- and 16-year-olds up to speed when it comes to managing their finances.

The 150-page textbook has been produced in partnership with Money Saving Expert’s Martin Lewis, who has donated £325,000 to bankroll sending 100 copies to each school.

Students will also be able to access the book, which covers budgeting, security and fraud and debt among other subjects, online in PDF form for free.

The move comes in response to an All Party Parliamentary Group on Financial Education for Young People report titled ‘Financial Education: Two Years On – Job Done?’, which highlighted an urgent need for resources and support for teachers and students.

The Big Issue also put the subject under the microscope in September, discovering how it is taught outside of schools and learning that many teachers lack the experience and confidence to teach financial education to their students.

The textbook, which has been backed by Minister for School Standards Nick Gibb MP, represents a step in the right direction in educating both teachers and students on financial education.

“I passionately believe that financial education could have a huge impact on the future wellbeing of millions of young people,” said Lewis. “When we got financial education on the national curriculum in 2014, we celebrated thinking the job was done. We were wrong. Schools have struggled with resources and there’s been little teacher’s training. Something else was needed to make it easy for schools and teachers.

“We need to break the cycle of debt. The best place to teach is in the classroom – I hope this textbook will help make that easier.”

Keeping control of the purse strings plays a crucial role in escaping poverty and avoiding the pitfalls that can lead to live on the streets, such as falling into rent arrears and being exited from a private rented tenancy.

“Financial education is a topic that still doesn’t always get the recognition in the education system that it deserves, despite its fundamental importance for everyday life,” said Michael Mercieca, Young Money CEO “It’s vital to the personal wellbeing of individuals and to the country that we improve the education of young people in this area to give them the best possible chance of success in the future.”

Image: iStock

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