San Francisco, CA - October 31, 2011 Ð Going above and beyond in the pursuit of financial literacy, Lebanon High School (Noblesville, IN) personal finance teacher Johnny Payne was recognized today by Visa Inc. as the national "Innovative Educator" for the month of October.
Mr. Payne, who teaches a one-semester personal finance course to almost 100 Lebanon High students, believes that one of the best ways to help students learn about money is through projects that expose and make them respond to real life financial scenarios, such as being married with children and having to put a family budget together.
"Young people today will soon face a number of financial choices when they get older, many of them difficult ones, and so they need to get a sense now of what life would really be like as an adult within a given situation," said Payne. "From my vantage point, there isn't a more important class for students then learning how to handle money, and handle it well."
As a result of Mr. Payne's hands-on approach to financial learning, many of his former students have emailed to thank him for helping them enter the workforce prepared to budget, save and invest in their futures.
To learn more about how Mr. Payne is helping his students tackle their financial futures, including how he had a positive impact on one student in particular, please visit www.practicalmoneyskills.com, the website for Visa's award-winning financial education program, Practical Money Skills for Life.
"For many Americans, particularly young Americans, financial education does not begin at home and so it is critical that dynamic educators like Mr. Payne are on the front lines in the effort to make sure young people understand financial basics," said Jason Alderman, Visa's senior director of global financial education. "Mr. Payne truly shares Visa's longstanding commitment to ensuring that all consumers understand the importance of responsible money management."
The Innovative Educator award is handed out monthly to one or more teachers nationwide who demonstrate a commitment to bringing personal finance education into their classroom. The award is part of Visa's Practical Money Skills for Life program, an educator-developed and educator-approved program that helps studentsÑfrom preschoolers and elementary school students, to teens and college studentsÑlearn the essentials of personal finance.
Created by Visa and available in both English and Spanish, educators, parents and students can access free educational resources including: useful personal finance information on a variety of topics, lesson plans and games, calculators, research and a monthly e-newsletter with over 70,000 subscribers. Visa also runs What's My Score (www.whatsmyscore.org), a leading higher education consumer awareness program. This free Web site guides college students through the ABC's of a FICO credit score, from factors that can lower a score to ways to improve it.
As part of its ongoing outreach efforts to promote early and continuous financial education since 2000, Visa has helped to bridge the digital divide by donating computers to high schools around the country and providing schools with the Practical Money Skills for Life curriculum. In addition, Visa has provided teacher training on the program so that educators can maximize the program's many valuable resources and benefits.
About Visa Inc.
Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency. Underpinning digital currency is one of the world's most advanced processing networks–VisaNet–that is capable of handling more than 20,000 transactions a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank, and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: Pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit usa.visa.com/about-visa/our_business.html.