PITTSFIELD -- Thousands of local students are learning to manage their money in the midst of difficult economic times.
Banzai, an award-winning financial literacy program, teaches middle and high school students basic financial concepts through interactive, real-life scenarios. The program has been made available free to more than 20 area schools through the generosity of Greylock Federal Credit Union.
Schools using the program in Berkshire County are Hoosac Valley, Nessacus Regional and Monument Valley Regional middle schools, Drury High School, McCann Technical School, Mount Greylock and Monument Mountain regional high schools, Lee Middle and High School, Abbott Memorial School, Lenox Memorial Middle/High School and Hillcrest Educational Centers.
The Banzai free resources are designed to help students understand the importance of saving, budgeting and spending their money wisely. Students learn to manage unexpected expenses such as parking tickets, interest charges and overdraft fees. The educational program also introduces students to auto loans, bank statements, entertainment costs, savings and more.
Banzai received the Curriculum of the Year Award from the Institute of Financial Literacy and aligns with state curriculum requirements for personal finance education.
The online program is supplemented by printed workbooks. Currently, the program is used by more than 5,000 schools in all 50 states.