Academy students invest in their future

Students at a City Academy will learn how to manage their money with the introduction of a school bank.

Thistley Hough Academy in Penkhull has opened its own banking branch manned by students for students, who will save ‘Thistley Dollars’ with the aim of improving their financial literacy.

The project is being run with support from Academy business partners Novus Property Solutions and The Hanley Economic Building Society.

Academy director of mathematics Chris Dillon, project co-ordinator, said: “Supporting students to develop their understanding of the world of finance is a vital part of our work at the academy.

“Every student will be encouraged to open an account which will come with an initial balance thanks to Novus.

“We already have more than 200 of our students signed up to the school bank with more accounts opening daily.

“Students have a chance to become regular active savers throughout their time at Thistley Hough Academy and we feel developing student’s financial literacy is a vital part of our work.

“From next week all of our students who have accounts can register so they can go online and see how much money they have in their account, as that’s part of preparing them for what they will experience in adult life and forms part of our financial literacy curriculum.”

Novus have completed building the school bank which is be manned by students supported by staff from The Hanley Economic, and students will be encouraged to save and deposit money on a regular basis.

He added: “We believe this project will provide our students with a financial education that will allow them to access financial services with confidence in the future.”

Nathan Fletcher, aged 11, from Stoke, said: “Emma from the bank comes in every Thursday so we can go along then and pay money in.

“I’ve made four deposits so far because I had some Christmas money, as I’d like to save for when I’m older to help me get a good job.

“This is my only bank account and my parents think it’s a good way for me to save my money.”

Hamza Shakil, aged 13, from Etruria, said: “I started using the bank four weeks ago and I’ve already saved about £20.

“It’s easy to use and it’s the only bank account I have and when I told my parents about it they thought it was a good idea.

“Ultimately I’d really like to save up for a good car.”

Emma Hancock, branch assistant from the Hanley Economic in Newcastle, said: “The student savings bank is a great way to get young people saving and to understand the benefits of doing that.

“It helps them to learn important lessons about money, creates a good saving habit and makes it easier for students to save with us through regular visits to the school.

“As a local building society working with our community is a key part of who we are and it continues to be a pleasure to work with Thistley Hough Academy to help embed the importance of saving.”

Kevin Rhone, Head of Social Value at Novus Property Solutions said: “Our Business Class partnership with Thistley Hough Academy aims to prevent social background determining a young person’s success at school and beyond.

“Improving students’ skills and employability is our key focus, and the bank project is one of many which we support, from mock interviews to skills challenges aimed at ensuring they have a strong start in life.

“It will provide a focal point for pupils to open a bank account, manage their money and more importantly provide them with financial skills they need when they leave school.”

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