Financial planning to be taught at school: How will this affect advisers?

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Maths, year 9 – How can we obtain more money?

Alistair and Bonnie are year 9 students who would like to earn some money. They investigate different ways of earning money including getting a job and then allowing that money to grow by using simple interest. They also investigate the effects of inflation and its influence on decision making around financial goals.

In this unit, students assess the advantages and disadvantages of different ways of obtaining money, including different ways of getting paid. They investigate the number of hours per week that year 9 students work, perform simple interest calculations, calculate earnings based on rates of pay and commission, and investigate the way that prices change over time.

Enduring Understandings/Deep Learnings:

  • earning money can help to achieve one’s goals
  • managing money wisely can make it grow
  • spreadsheets are useful tools for representing and analysing data
  • the accuracy of statistical results is affected by sample size


Maths, year 10 – Reaching goals: What’s involved?

Cathy and Dinuka are year 10 students who are planning to go on a holiday together after they finish school at the end of year 12. They will need some money to fund their holiday. Planning for the holiday leads to them to think about financial planning – goal setting, saving, borrowing, investing, working with compound interest, good and bad credit, depreciation and inflation.

In this unit students investigate the effects of compound interest, derive the compound interest formula and apply it in a variety of contexts that have implications for financial planning. While this unit doesn’t describe the process of financial planning, the considerations encountered are a pre-requisite for any further work in constructing a financial plan.

Enduring Understandings/Deep Learnings:

  • setting goals and planning for the future can help us get what we want
  • compound interest can help us reach our goals faster
  • the compound interest formula can be applied in a range of financial contexts
  • there are risks and rewards involved in borrowing money


Science, year 8 – Light up the Globe!

This unit will help students make the right choice from the wide range of light globes now available. Their choice will be based on cost, value for money, life span of globe, light output and energy used. Students will gain an understanding of how light output and electricity (energy) consumption are measured.

They will use a light meter to compare light emitted from a variety of light globes, for example, incandescent, fluorescent and halogen. They will then use the consumer information on the light globes to compare the electric power that would be used to run the light globe for 100 hours. The data collected will be processed so that students conclude which light globe is their preferred choice. They will justify their choice by presenting a pamphlet promoting their choice of light globe.

Enduring Understandings/Deep Learnings

  • conclusions from science investigations should be based on evidence
  • science understanding can inform consumer choices
  • comparing products can help consumers make wise decisions
  • individual consumer choices can benefit society

What do you make of the scheme? Have your say by commenting below.

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  • Anna on 12/12/2012 3:35:12 PM

    It would be great to have financial planners teaching these units around Australia. ASIC could set up a register for schools to link up with financials advisers who also hold 'working with children' cards .

  • @ryandavidgrant on 12/12/2012 10:31:16 AM

    This can only be good for our future. I know of many FPs who have provided training and teaching at local schools and universities due to the severe under investment in the financial education of our nation. I look forward to seeing a stronger Australia as a result!

  • Glenn on 10/12/2012 4:30:21 PM

    Kids should be taught these skill anyway. Agree with Mel, as the attitudes they will learn will be more harmful than beneficial. Michael, so right would be a good thing for Advisers to do some probono workshops!

  • Bruce on 10/12/2012 3:17:25 PM

    I agree with Mel's comment about curriculums and teachers, but what a great opportunity for Financial Planners to offer to pass-on their knowledge. I did the FPA's Dollarsmart program at my son's school and it was very well received.

  • Mel on 7/12/2012 3:25:13 PM

    I am all for financial education, however I don't think that teachers with their already crowded curriculums should be the ones to teach it. My parents were both teachers, so I have a lot of clients who are teachers. I REALLY don't want them teaching our kids the way that they think.

  • Angus D on 7/12/2012 11:27:16 AM

    Fantastic news! Long overdue. Congrats to all of those involved.

  • Stephen on 7/12/2012 10:21:12 AM

    I think that everyone needs some form of basic money sense especially the fundamentals of FV and PV but the amount of rather strange things that kids can now opt for in their later years of school is getting ridiculous. Some high schools don't even demand that people do maths anymore let alone any science or social studies. Some of the skills I see now at kids in first year of uni is mind bogglingly poor. I think that high schools need to focus on teaching kids necessary skills instead of opting for soft subjects that give them a better ATAR.

  • Michael on 7/12/2012 10:07:06 AM

    How could this be anything but a good thing?
    Let's make everyone more financially literate so they appreciate the need for advice.
    It also helps us to recruit young people who want to be involved in the industry as genuine advisers and nto sales people.
    Why not encourage Authorised Reps to get involved in some pro bono workshops?

WP forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

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