Birmingham invests $1m to improve student financial literacy

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (WIAT) – Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has announced that the city will invest $1 million to help students in the Birmingham City Schools system gain better financial literacy.

The program, dubbed the BHM Financial Freedom Project, will launch the second week of October at six BCS campuses and will eventually be rolled out to all schools in the district. Woodfin says this new partnership with the city, BCS and IMC Financial Consulting will give students in Birmingham something he never got as a child.

“I was taught math, I was taught reading, I was taught social studies and science. What I was not taught was financial literacy. It’s something that I had to learn on my own,” Woodfin said. “We want better for our children.

The initiative will be the first in the country to “pair grade-appropriate and culturally relevant financial education with a savings account, investment platform,” according to the city.

Students will receive specialized training through the project, receive a savings account, courtesy of Goalsetter to which families can contribute, and create stock portfolios. These portfolios will include stocks from companies in Goalsetter’s lexicon, including Nike, Delta Airlines and Twitter.

Jackson-Olin High School, Carver High School, South Hampton K-8 School, Hudson K-8 School, Sun Valley Elementary School and Robinson Elementary School will be among the first to pilot the program.

You can watch the full announcement in the video player above.

Geraldine L. Melton