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Financial Literacy

Improving the Financial Literacy of Californians

NEFE offers cash for taking a spending reality check

Contributed by mthornton

The National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) is offering prizes ranging from $100 to $1000 for teens and adults willing to give their spending a reality check. Contest entrants can submit videos about wasteful spending habits or about money spent on “must have” purchases now gathering dust. Videos must be three minutes or less and answer the question “what have you wasted your money on?” The contest runs through May 25, 2011.

For further information visit, http://www.realitycheckchallenge.org.

CalCPA Members Give Back During Busy Season

Contributed by mthornton

As millions of Californians prepared to file their taxes, CalCPA members offered their expertise to a multitude of media outlets in the form of tax tips, answering questions on call-in shows, and presenting on topics such as retirement, identity theft, prepaid credit cards and home loans. Three new Financial Empowerment podcasts were created on home refinancing, how to select a tax preparer and the proper use of credit cards. Finally, our members made more than 30 presentations of our Dollars & Sense workshop and NEFE’s High School Financial Planning program, creating more financially literate citizens in their communities. A Sacramento Bee feature story discussed Bruce Kajiwara’s presentation of NEFE’s Budgeting Unit at Burbank High School.

Members who shared tax tips or other information that helped taxpayers at the request of news media outlets:
Mark Bellows – Sacramento Business Journal
Greg Burke – Sacramento Bee
Guy Caporicci – Los Angeles Times
Guy Carl – Napa Register
Susan Carlisle – CBS MoneyWatch.com
Laura Cullen – Redding Record-Searchlight
John DiCarlo – Long Beach Business Journal
Michael Eisenberg – KCBS-TV in Los Angeles and Forbes
Bridget Foreman – Pacific Coast Business Times
Mary Kay Foss – San Francisco Chronicle and Philadelphia Inquirer
Pam Haskins – San Francisco Chronicle
William Healey – The Public Record of Palm Springs
Barbara Kogen – CBS MoneyWatch.com and The Fiscal Times
Harlan Levinson – FrontiersWeb.com
Steven Mandel – San Fernando Valley Business Journal
Dan Morris – Los Angeles Times
John Panetta – North Bay Business Journal
Henry Pilger – San Francisco Chronicle
Pat Rogan – KXPR-FM in Sacramento
Jan Rosati – Sacramento Business Journal
Johanna Sweeney Salt – CNBC.com, Bottom Line Personal, and KRLA-AM in Los Angeles
Donna Sauter – Sacramento Business Journal
Michael Schulman – ABC news
Rob Seltzer – Los Angeles Times
Jim Sharvin – KPOO radio in San Francisco
Hilary Trout – Pacific Coast Business Times
Kendall Wheeler – Fresno Bee
Michael Velazquez – Telemundo, Azteca Television, La Opinion
Tom Vermeulen – Ripon Record 

The following members presented Dollars & Sense workshops:
Steve Cushman – Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors in San Diego
Lee Duran – Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors in San Diego
Angie Grainger – Parent Engagement Conference on Financial Literacy in Mountain View
Larry Kaplan – San Diego State University
Max Liphart – First Unitarian Church in Los Angeles
Kathy Shirley – Palmdale 

The following members presented NEFE’s High School Financial Planning Program, Career Outreach, or College Outreach programs:
Regina Bianucci Rus – Marin Oaks High School
Elvamae Bolano – Center High School
Jimmy Campos – South El Monte High School
Laura Cullen – Fresno State University
Michele Day – Los Lomas High School
Minel Diaz – Canada College
Michael Domecus – Novato High School
Georges Fatough – Casa de Oro Library
Jennifer Guglielmo – Novato High School
Katie Hernandez – Rubidoux High School
Ashley Jacobsen – Washington Union High School
L. Paul Johnson – Del Oro High School
Bruce Kajiwara – Burbank High School
Rouyu Loughry – Central County Occupational Center
Michelle Matlin – Pittsburg High School
John McWilliams – Lowell High School
Dan Morris – Milpitas High School
Marc Parkinson – Bellarmine High School
Dennis Ryan – Casa de Oro Library
Jeremy Salvador – Verdugo High School
Thomas Sanchez – Center High School
Terrence Seiberlich – Las Lomas High School
Mike Shimmin – Novato High School

Financial Literacy heads to the Capitol

Contributed by mthornton


As many of you know, April is National Financial Literacy Month, first recognized by the U.S. Senate with Resolution 316 in 2004. To spotlight financial literacy efforts around California, John Chiang, state controller, and Mike Eng, assembly member 49th District, co-sponsored a Financial Literacy Fair at the Capitol Building in Sacramento. On April 7th at the North Steps of the Capitol under the shade of majestic redwood trees, CalCPA along with credit counselors, banks, financial service providers, consumer protection groups, and community-based organizations from around the state gathered to share their offerings with the public and use the one-on-one time with the public to explain their goals and the events, resources, and curriculum they use to accomplish those goals.

Less than a week later, the State Assembly Committee on Banking and Finance unanimously passed Assembly Bill 597 sponsored by Assembly Member Mike Eng. The bill would establish the California Financial Literacy Fund in the State Treasury. The purpose of the fund would be to facilitate partnerships between the financial services community, the state government, and public and private institutions to improve Californian’s financial literacy.

To see the opening address from Assembly Member Mike Eng, click here.

To see remarks from the State Controller John Chiang, click here.

To read the full text of CA Assembly Bill 597, click here.

To read the text of President Obama’s 2011 declaration of April as National Financial Literacy Month, click here.

2011 California Financial Literacy Conference for Educators is a Hit!

Contributed by mthornton

On April 2, more than 200 educators gathered at the Los Angeles Convention Center to learn about the importance of bringing financial literacy into the classroom, the tools available (most free-of-charge) to get the job done, and how to master their own finances. The 2011 California Financial Literacy Conference for Educators, co-hosted by CalCPA, CalCPA Institute, and California Jump$tart Coalition, offered breakout sessions focused on the resources for different grade levels, success stories from active financial literacy programs, and popular topics in personal finance. The attendees received gift bags filled to the brim with great ideas for their classrooms, fun financial literacy products like Financial Football by Visa and information about CalCPA’s Financial Smarts for Teachers program. John Hope Bryant, founder of Operation HOPE, ended the day with an address highlighting the awesome impact of financial education for our nation’s future and the vital role teachers play in providing that information, which brought the audience to its feet.

A special thanks to members Mitchell Freedman, Bruce Kajiwara, Robert Seltzer, Dan Thomas, and Michael Velazquez for presenting our Financial Smarts for Teachers workshops.

You can learn more about the resources offered at the 2011 California Financial Literacy Conference for Educators by clicking on the links below:

It’s a Habit! Company
Junior Achievement Elementary Programs
Financial Fitness for Life (K-2)
Financial Fitnees for Life (3-5)
Feed the Pig for Tweens

Banking on Our Future
Junior Achievement Middle School Programs
It’s Your Choice
Career & College Clubs

The Federal Reserve
Banking on Our Future
National Endowment for Financial Education – High School Financial Planning Program
Junior Achievement High School Programs
Money Matters: Make it Count
Money Smart for Young Adults
The Teen Girl’s Gotta-Have-It Guide to Money

Financial Smarts for Teachers

2010-2011 School Year is Here!

Contributed by CalCPA

School is back in session and it’s time to bring financial literacy back to the classroom. CalCPA sent an email and brochure to more than 2,000 educators last week, promoting CalCPA’s student outreach program. We have received more than 20 presentation requests in the past week, with more coming in every day. Watch for volunteer outreach emails containing opportunities in your area.

Have contact with a high school? Now is a great time to have a conversation about how CalCPA’s free program can add value for students. For more information about the program, visit the
student outreach page.

First Friday for Financial Literacy on Facebook

Contributed by CalCPA

Check out the CalCPA Institute Facebook (FB) page! Financial Literacy Committee Chair Bruce Kajiwara posts a monthly message just for financial literacy advocates on the first Friday of each month. It’s one of the many reasons to become a FB fan of CalCPA Institute.

More reasons to become a fan:
- Create dialogue about financial literacy across the state

- Share your experience and inspire others to get involved

- Ask questions about financial literacy efforts and outreach efforts

- Stay up to date on the latest in financial literacy activity

- Post and view pictures of your community events
- Find and post financial literacy information and articles

Sign up today to become part of the conversation!
CalCPA Institute Facebook

Operation Hope Los Angeles Update

Contributed by CalCPA

Thank you to all of the Los Angeles volunteers who are participating in Operation Hope’s Banking on our Future (BOOF) program.

The following volunteers have completed training and are now assigned to an opportunity:

Daphne Porter

Kari Engelsted

Ashley Merrell

Anastasia Antonova

Andrew Kim

Phyllis Chestang

Several more volunteers have signed up for training with Operation Hope, and we will continue to report on the success of this initiative. If you want to be involved, you are first required to complete a 90-minute training session.

Upcoming webinars for September and October include:

BOOF Webinar Schedule

09/07 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

09/09 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

10/05 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

10/13 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

We create volunteer opportunities weekly. Please contact Crystil Turner for more information.

NEFE Goes to College

Contributed by CalCPA

The National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) has launched a college-specific, online financial literacy program called CashCourse. This free, interactive program covers a variety of financial literacy topics specific to this life stage. The program includes PowerPoint presentations, work kits, articles, budgeting wizards and more.

Only available to colleges or universities, the program is entirely online. If you are a college or university employee, you can enroll your school and become a leader in offering important financial resources to students.

If you are not a college or university employee, you will not have access to use the program, but you can view a sample site and promote the program to educators you know.

To enroll in CashCourse or to obtain additional information visit www.cashcourse.org.

Over 30,000 Students Reached!

Contributed by CalCPA

Thanks to all of your hard work, advocacy and commitment to education, CalCPA has reached over 30,000 students with financial literacy and careers outreach! Every year more and more educators anticipate their return CalCPA visit, and students walk away excited and empowered about their futures.

Congratulations to everyone who has made this program so successful, and here’s to the next 30,000!

Survey Says: 80% of CA Teachers Support Financial Literacy Efforts in the Classroom

Contributed by CalCPA

Pollinate: The Teacher Financial Literacy Project recently surveyed 2,776 teachers on their opinions regarding financial literacy and its incorporation in the classroom.

Results worth noting:
-about 80 percent of teachers support efforts to include financial literacy in the curriculum
- teachers felt stand-alone lessons and embedded it into the curriculum were the most valuable ways to teach the information
-the biggest set back for making this happen is lack of time and resources

What this says is that we are on the right track in delivering financial literacy presentations in a way that is helpful to educators. But it also challenges us to further promote our student outreach program and the free services that we offer. Talk to your local high school, and find out how CalCPA can be involved with increasing the financial literacy of California students.

Read the full Pollinate Report.