Comptroller speaks to elementary students about financial literacy

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot, far left, talks to third grade students at Greensboro Elementary School on Thursday, Nov. 21, about what they have learned about financial literacy from Junior Achievement of the Eastern Shore.

GREENSBORO — Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot stopped by Greensboro Elementary School on Thursday, Nov. 21, to celebrate Junior Achievement of the Eastern Shore, a nonprofit promoting financial literacy, entrepreneurship and work readiness in all K-12 students.

Franchot met with the school’s third grade students, where they got a quick refresher on what they had been learning about earning, saving, spending and donating money.

Franchot told the students Maryland is the richest state in the U.S., based on per capita earnings.

He said it is very important the students learn about money, as that will allow them to live happy and independent lives, to have families and be able to support local programs and initiatives, like the new school to be built in Greensboro, with tax dollars.

“I’m glad you’re learning now about this whole crazy system called the Maryland and U.S. economy,” Franchot said.

Franchot told the students it will be important to stay in Maryland after they graduate from high school, whether they go to work for someone else or start their own business.

“We need you so much here,” Franchot said.

Franchot then asked a pre-selected representative of each third grade class to come forward, to demonstrate earning, saving, spending and donating money, along with representatives of local businesses that sponsor Junior Achievement of the Eastern Shore.

Each student was given a stack of Monopoly bills by Blake Whitten, of Whitten Retirement Solutions, representing their paycheck.

The students then gave some of that money to Kevin Cashen, of Queenstown Bank, representing adding to their savings accounts.

The next stop was H.G. Wilson, of Preston Automotive Group, who got $20 from each student for a car, representing spending.

Finally, each student gave some of their remaining money to Ty Mumford, vice president of the school’s PTA, to represent donating.

“Good news,” Franchot told the students. “You know more about financial responsibility than most people who have graduated from college.”

Jayme Hayes, president of Junior Achievement of the Eastern Shore, thanked Franchot for being a big supporter of the nonprofit’s mission.

Dr. Patricia Saelens, superintendent of Caroline County Public Schools, said the students can expect more lessons from Junior Achievement in middle school, and when they get to high school, they will have to pass a financial literacy course in order to graduate.

Franchot noted the Junior Achievement is a private nonprofit funded by corporations that represent the genius of private sector entrepreneurship and innovation.

“This is probably the most important subject for young people to learn,” Franchot said.

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