The Alberta government is investing $5 million in financial literacy programs for students.
Funding is being increased to three organizations to expand and improve student financial knowledge and training, in hopes of inspiring students to pursue their interests and contribute to the economy. Students from Grades 3-12 are expected to benefit from the investment.
“Students are our future entrepreneurs, innovators and creators.,” said Education Minister Adriana LaGrange in a statement announcing the funding increase. “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.”
Through an extension to their 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 7-12 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.
Junior Achievement will also receive $250,000 per year over the next three years to work with teachers to provide young learners in Grades 3 to 6 with hands-on, experiential financial literacy programming, work readiness and entrepreneurship education. This programming will support financial literacy learning in the new K-6 Physical Education and Wellness curriculum being implemented in classrooms this fall.
In July 2021, Alberta Education awarded Enriched Academy and the Canadian Foundation for Economic Education with $700,000 and $300,000 respectively, following a provincewide call for grant proposals totalling $1 million. Junior Achievement also received a grant renewal of $200,000.
Over the next three years, the three organizations expect to reach more than 360,000 students in Grades 3-12 with financial literacy programming each year.
NDP education critic Sarah Hoffman said “when the UCP’s draft rewrite was revealed we were relieved that topics like computer science skills, financial literacy, and consent from the NDP-developed curriculum stayed in.
“But educators have repeatedly told the UCP that overall their curriculum is not worthy of Alberta’s students.
“Alberta students deserve a modern, inclusive, evidence-based curriculum that they can all see themselves in and will prepare them for higher learning, the world of work and how to be engaged citizens.”