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Blurry Forest


In Australia, several states and territories have banned bank branded financial education in schools, paving the way for school-led programs free from commercial interests. However, there is a growing number of providers pitching "solutions" to school leaders and teachers. This article outlines some guiding criteria to help school leaders strengthen their financial education programs.

Students are digital natives and have access to complex and costly choices at their fingertips. Whether via their mobile phone, television remote control, or gaming console, they can accrue significant expenses in the name of entertainment. They are also subject to new forms of financial risk and deception, including unwanted calls and scam emails and texts. All of these ‘fintech’ (financial technology) developments and issues warrant teaching about.

Students are interested to learn about cryptocurrency. This is somewhat unsurprising given the ‘get rich quick’ hype and range of well-marketed trading apps luring investors in. Trade of cryptocurrency is a largely unregulated process, and this leaves space for risky dealings. This article offers some simple orienting ideas to tune teachers into students’ learning needs in this area.

There's more to a "good" financial education than banking, budgets and best buys. In this interview, I consider what it means to be financially capable, how we can best educate young people for changing financial times, and who should be driving school programs and lessons.

Advice on money often boils down to simplistic messages about budgeting, understanding compound interest and avoiding debt. But research suggests financial decision-making depends as much on our values, expectations, emotions and family experiences as information taught at school. In short, the way people interact with money is highly complex and so the way we teach our kids needs to catch up.

For the first time, the new VCE Foundation Mathematics Study Design gives students the opportunity to continue their studies from Units 1 & 2 into Units 3 & 4. This article explains the key aims and features of the subject that will engage students, including the focus on financial mathematics and the use of digital technologies.

I recently helped shape Victorian senior secondary curricula that better supports the development of critical numeracy. This article explains some of the research and theory that guided the curriculum writers in developing exciting new curriculum frameworks.

Maths prepares students for the ultimate test — life beyond school. As maths is everywhere, regardless of where life leads you, the more maths you learn at school, the better prepared you may be to understand the world. This article gives school students evidence-based advice for choosing subjects in their senior years.

How can we prepare a financially capable citizenry through school education? Watch my opening keynote address at the Building Financially Capable Communities Conference in Auckland, November 2019. Hosted by the Westpac Massey Fin-Ed Centre.

Misguided trust has exposed vulnerable individuals to the moral hazard of the banks – and underscores the importance of improved financial regulation and education moving forward. This is why States and Territories are looking closely at financial education programs that teach children about money on the banks’ terms.

Most of what is taught and learned in financial literacy programs in schools reflects middle class values and a conservative ideology about the role of government and individuals in achieving economic prosperity. It's time for a more holistic and modern vision.

There’s nothing like a financial crisis to remind us of the importance of quality financial education at school. So, is a NewsCorp columnist and financial self-help author the saviour schools need?

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