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Experts Push For Financial Literacy Lessons Among Primary School Children

Experts want financial literacy lessons in schools

Experts have expressed the need for equipping children with skills to save and invest early on in their lives.

The experts were on Thursday speaking at the closing event of a donor-funded financial literacy programme for primary school children in selected schools in the Kampala Metropolitan area.

George Mutekanga, the Assistant Commissioner in charge of Private Schools and Institutions said financial literacy hasn’t previously been given attention in schools and they found this to be a serious anomaly affecting what economic behaviours people carry into adulthood.

Mutekanga says that this literacy programme named  Cha-Ching has been funded and popularized to schools by  NGO Junior Achievement Uganda (JAU) where children in Primary five to Primary seven are taught the basics of finance and planning tactics. He added that the same model is going to be borrowed by the government to schools out of Kampala, Wakiso and Mukono where it’s currently being employed.

Through Cha-Ching which is a Chinese word coined from the sound of a coin when dropped in a box or tin according to Rachael Mwagale, the Executive Director JAU, they have developed a curriculum to guide teachers on what money lessons they can introduce to children of ages eight to twelve on how to manage their money and the importance of donating among others.

This year alone, she says they have been able to reach 3,700 pupils in twenty-four schools in Kampala, Wakiso and Mukono.

Mwagale says they sold this idea to schools around Kampala to allow pupils to voluntarily join.

Ashley Nankya, a primary five pupil at Buddo Junior School who enrolled for the programme, told URN in an interview that she had so far saved 20,000 Shillings from her pocket money.

While she has started saving, she is still not yet certain what she will later invest in or spend.

However, according to Rosalyn Brown,  the Corporate Affairs Manager, Prudential  Insurance Company that is funding this literacy programme, this initiative is not just limited to Uganda as the company has launched the same as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to other seven countries in Africa including Ghana, Togo, Cameroon, Zambia, Corte De Voir and   Kenya where they most recently launched.

Brown says everywhere the programme is designed in a way that teachers are trained on age-appropriate materials to use in financial literacy lessons. In addition, the children get to watch a cartoon which is accessible on YouTube.

-URN

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