Students taught value of money

Published: 30/04/2011 05:00

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The
HCM City Department of Education and Training has been providing financial
education for students, especially those in high school, as part of a
soft-skills training programme for them.


Students at a
secondary school in HCM City buy street food.
(Photo: VNS)

At a workshop on
providing financial literacy for young people held on Wednesday, Nguyen Hoai
Chuong, the department’s deputy head, said it was important to help students
understand the value of money and plan their own expenses.


The department in
co-ordination with the US NGO of Save the Children have taken this project to
four high schools — Marie Curie, Nguyen Huu Huan, Le Hong Phong, and Hung Vuong
— since last year.


More than 6,000
students in these schools have benefited, Hoang Thu Huong, manager of Save the
Children’s southern office, said.


Financial education
for students has become popular in many countries like Singapore, South Korea,
the US, India, and Australia.


Huong and her
colleagues have studied the curricula in these countries and compiled one
suitable for Viet Nam.


The project has
enabled the students in the four schools to manage their money and spend it
properly, Huong claimed.

Tran Thi Hue city, a
project official, said students these days had more money than in the past.


She and her
colleagues found out from the parents of 27 students at Nguyen Du and Marie
Curie High Schools that they gave their children VND50,000–300,000 (US$2.4-14) a
week.


However, a 2009 study
by Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper of 100 students at Le Quy Don and Marie Curie
found that a more than one third of them got VND3 million–5 million ($160-260) a
month.


Most of them did not
know how to spend or save properly, Hue said, and frittered it all away on
shopping, playing games, eating, and watching films.


Only some of them
saved some money to buy books and other things they needed without asking their
parents for more, she said.


A 2010 study of 400
high-school students by Save the Children found that many of their parents never
taught them about money or discussed their expenditure with them.


Almost a third
thought it was too early to teach their children about expenditure, Hue said.


Though the rest said
it was very important to provide financial education early to children – at 11
or 12 – to prevent profligate spending and even stealing money for spending,
they did not know how to do it and wanted their schools to teach them instead.


Ho Tan Minh, a
teacher helping with the project at Marie Curie High School, said students and
their parents liked it.

Many parents wanted
the school to maintain and even increase these classes, he said.


The students have
become more aware of the value of money and consider ed carefully before
spending on things like clothes and shoes, he said.


Chuong said the
department would introduce the programme at two more high schools this year and
more in future.


VietNamNet/Viet
Nam News

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