In collaboration with the New York Credit Union Foundation, Nassau Educators held a free workshop for 50 member-teachers as part of the National Endowment for Financial Education's high school planning program. Attendees received six continuing education credits as well as an instructional binder.
Andrea Tracey, membership development manager at Nassau Educators, was responsible about getting the word out about the event to local educators and said that the response showed a definite need for these types of programs.
"A very important part of the program was being able to provide the continuing education credits. That's a very nice benefit to the teachers," Tracey said.
The credit union has 23 teachers on a waiting list if it decides to hold the event again next year, and Tracey said she had to turn teachers away before they created the waiting list.
The teachers who attended were mainly high school-level educators who teach social studies, economics, science, math and special education. Representatives from two other credit unions attended to observe the event as well as representatives from the Board of Cooperative Educational Services and area colleges.
The session was a full-day event and was taught by New York Credit Union Foundation Executive Director Diane LaVigna-Wixted and consultants Susan Gubing and Carole Coloe. Attendees learned how to create a financial plan and a budget, how to propose a personal saving and investing plan, how to handle credit and manage debt, how to use financial services, how to create an insurance plan and how career and lifestyle choices can affect a financial plan.
Participants learned how to implement these practices in a way that is relevant to teenage students. For example, Tracey said that teachers could discuss the cost of texting over a year and how students could apply that money toward savings or a car loan.
The teachers also learned about the resources that are available to help them teach about financial literacy, such as online videos and virtual speakers.
Teachers also had the opportunity to interact with each other and share best practice stories about their experiences teaching these types of lessons in the classroom.
"The wealth of knowledge exchanged by the participants left them with a different sense of how to apply these lessons in the classroom," said Eileen Nolan, senior vice president of marketing at Nassau Educators.
Nolan said the event also helped Nassau Educators stand out in the community by attracting attention from local media. Some local media outlets attended the event, and teachers who participated were interviewed by local television stations.