Under the leadership of Mississippi Treasurer Lynn Fitch, TEAM (Treasurer’s Education About Money) seeks to change Mississippi’s financial culture. A public-private partnership, TEAM harnesses funding from community groups and financial institutions to provide teacher training and put financial education resources into classrooms at no cost to schools, teachers, parents, or students. It is currently in its fourth year in Mississippi high schools.
Mississippi Treasurer – Hon. Lynn Fitch
Partnering with EverFi and the Mississippi Council on Economic Education (MCEE), TEAM takes a two-pronged approach: First, it provides professional teacher training in personal finance courses. In its first three years, more than 1,200 teachers have been trained utilizing the experts and programming of MCEE. Those teachers, in turn, have a circle of influence that can reach more than 123,000 students.
Second, TEAM is powered by a web-based interactive learning platform developed by EverFi that allows students to complete modules on classroom computers or even on their mobile devices at home. In just three years, TEAM has reached over 66,000 Mississippi students, earning over 255,000 hours of financial education learning. And, in benchmark assessments, students are increasing their financial awareness by an average of 92%. TEAM has already reached over 350 schools in 74 of Mississippi’s 82 counties.
The Mississippi Council on Economic Education is a vital partner in TEAM teacher training. Each year, MCEE hosts Mississippi’s State Finance Challenge at Millsaps College in Jackson. At this growing event, state challenge winners and the state financial literacy student of the year are awarded college scholarships through Mississippi’s 529 program, Mississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS).
According to EverFi, nearly 30% of 4th-12th graders in Mississippi public schools are using an EverFi course, which is the highest percentage in country by far. Each year, EverFi certifies schools to use the EverFi learning platforms that students use to increase their financial literacy knowledge.
Girl Scout Career and Financial Literacy Day
Treasurer Lynn Fitch and TEAM are committed to providing an environment that fosters financial empowerment through education, especially for young Mississippi women. Launched in 2015, Girl Scout Career Day host Girl Scout Juniors, Cadettes, and Seniors from across Mississippi to learn more about improving their personal finance skills and learning about the female leadership in government finance-related roles. Students participate in a tour of the Treasurer’s office, the Mississippi Capitol building, and have the opportunity to meet other state leaders. Working with the Girl Scouts Council of Greater Mississippi, TEAM has also helped develop the program to help the Scouts earn badges related to sound personal finance habits.
Financial Literacy Month
TEAM is dedicated to changing Mississippi’s financial culture. Under Treasurer Fitch’s leadership, March is celebrated as Financial Literacy Month in Mississippi. Along with Governor Phil Bryant declaring the month of April as Financial Literacy Month, the Office of the State Treasurer partners with the Mississippi Council on Economic Education (MCEE) in celebrating the achievements our State’s students have made so far. TEAM participates in MCEE’s Finance Challenge at which the state challenge winners and the state financial literacy student of the year are awarded Mississippi Affordable College Savings (MACS) scholarships to help them along their path to higher education.
Another way TEAM is promoting financial literacy to our young people is by partnering with New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees, the NFL, Regions Bank, and Visa Inc. to provide teachers with a fun tool for teaching personal finance. Financial Football, an educational video game, is provided to school across the state. It combines the rules of the NFL with financial literacy lessons to make learning enjoyable and entertaining. Financial Football is a great way to get students interested in personal finance and gives them a financial playbook they can use the rest of their lives.