Local students are getting a free education in how to manage their money. Chattanooga Federal Employees Credit Union is working with Banzai, a national award-winning financial literacy program, to make the curriculum available to six schools in the Chattanooga area free.
“Banzai is a web-based financial literacy program,” said Morgan Vandagriff, co-founder of Banzai. “Kids have their own bank accounts, and they work through assignments that are based on real life. But because Chattanooga Federal is sponsoring it, local schools get it for free. More than ever, it’s important that kids develop sound financial skills to prepare them for the real world. Chattanooga Federal realizes that, and they’re doing something about it.”
Mark T. Fraker, CEO of Chattanooga Federal noted, “We constantly see people looking for direction in their financial lives. Partnering with Banzai to put a financial literacy program in place at Woodmore Elementary, Dalewood Middle, and Brainerd High Schools along with Boyd Buchanan, Silverdale Baptist Academy and Tyner Academy, Chattanooga Federal is helping students to prepare for their financial future. Community outreach like this is one of the ways we invest in our community.”
Banzai is an interactive, online program which aligns with state curriculum requirements for personal finance education. It has become the largest program of its kind, servicing more than 50,000 teachers and available in all 50 states.
Chattanooga Federal has offered time, money, industry experience, and a variety of credit union resources to help local schools teach personal finance in the classroom. Students using the program are exposed to real-life scenarios where they learn to pay bills and balance a budget – but it’s not always easy. Students must learn to manage unexpected expenses such as parking tickets, interest charges and overdraft fees. The educational program also introduces students to auto loans, bank statements, entertainment costs, savings and more.
“Too often students get out of school and they just aren’t ready for the financial roller coasters life can give us,” Mr. Vandagriff said. “Banzai teaches students to navigate those twists and turns and come out on top. We’re excited to work with Chattanooga Federal to improve financial literacy in local schools.”
Teachers interested in using the Banzai program can visit cfecu.teachbanzai.com or call 888-8-BANZAI.