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Young People: Financial Services

Volume 487: debated on Thursday 29 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what steps he is taking to ensure young people are equipped with personal finance skills; and if he will make a statement; (251202)

(2) what plans he has to include personal finance skills in initial teacher training courses; and if he will make a statement.

Personal finance education is currently covered in the primary curriculum as part of the non-statutory framework for Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education and Citizenship. Sir Jim Rose is currently carrying out an independent review of the primary curriculum, including PSHE education, and will report in March 2009.

The new ‘economic wellbeing and financial capability’ programme of study has been taught in secondary schools since September 2008 as part of the revised secondary non-statutory curriculum for PSHE education. The place of economic wellbeing in the curriculum will be further strengthened by our intention to consult on making PSHE education statutory.

The Government have also committed £11.5 million over three years to support financial education in schools. This includes provision to improve Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in financial capability for teachers. Standard Q15 in our standards for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) requires all trainee teachers at Key Stage 3 and 4 to demonstrate a familiarity with economic wellbeing and financial capability. Teachers of Business Education in the secondary phase will receive training in aspects of personal finance relevant to the 14-19 curriculum. We are working with the Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) to develop a specialist PSHE education route through Initial Teacher Training.