July 26, 2017
Suva, Fiji – National student assessment tools developed for Fiji’s Financial Education (FinEd Fiji) curriculum were officially handed over to the Ministry of Education today by the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme (PFIP).
The National Assessment Tools were developed to ensure that the students have grasped the concept of ‘save, spend wisely and invest’. A pilot assessment took place in June this year covering 1400 students across selected year levels within a sample of primary and secondary schools and administered through the Ministry of Education’s Curriculum Advisory Services Unit.
The primary and secondary school students sat the assessments across the financial education subjects that have been embedded within the national curriculum since the 2013 school year. The pilot activity showed that students are generally well versed with key concepts of financial education at the year levels 6, 8, 10 and 12, with strong results particularly at the primary school and senior secondary year level.
Since national implementation in 2013, PFIP has actively worked with the Ministry to deliver several phases of teacher training aimed at strengthening classroom implementation. The National Assessment Tools development coupled with 2017 school FinEd monitoring activity and the National FinEd Innovation Awards are the final components of the FinED Fiji Project, whereby FinEd is now firmly embedded within the education system.
Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Education, Ioane Tiko said that he was pleased with the results of the first assessment that was trialed in Fiji.
“The results show us that firstly, the tools are appropriate for students of multiple year levels and most importantly, that students are responding well to the curriculum. As a result, we are confident that our students will leave school with the necessary skills, knowledge and behaviours to enable them to interact confidently with the financial economy, which is the desired impact of this project,” he said.
Reserve Bank of Fiji (RBF) Acting Governor Ariff Ali said Fiji recognizes that financial inclusion and financial literacy are complementary.
“When an individual or household is financially literate, they have the ability to understand and to make informed choices relating to financial services and products and are able to manage their money and investments wisely,” he said.
He added that the partnerships amongst all stakeholders in furthering financial literacy in Fiji has been the driver of the delivery of a coordinated national strategy on financial literacy/education.
In handing over the National Assessment tools to the Ministry today, PFIP Programme Manager Mark Flaming said that the FinED Fiji Project was a role model of best practice in the region.
“PFIP’s major accomplishment in the area of financial education (FinEd) thus far has been providing technical assistance and implementation support to the Fiji Ministry of Education and the RBF in rolling out financial education in the national school curricula, now impacting almost 205,000 students annually nation-wide, 48% of whom are female.”
“This Project’s success speaks to the hard work and enduring partnerships that PFIP has had with the Ministry of Education, the RBF, the Australian Government’s DFAT, the former SPBEA and other FinEd stakeholders in Fiji.”
The event is the first part of PFIP handing over of the FinED Project to the Ministry of Education to take on full management of the project beginning September 2018.
About the FinEd Fiji Project
FinEd is an initiative of PFIP, a regional effort helping low-income households gain access to sustainable financial services and to empower consumers through financial education.
The FinED Fiji Project began in 2011, jointly implemented with the Ministry of Education, with the aim of integrating learning about personal money management and investment into the curriculum for Fiji’s primary and secondary schools.
Beginning in 2013 with national implementation, every Fijian child has engaged with the underlying premise “Save, Spend Wisely and Share” continuously in their compulsory subjects throughout their primary and secondary school years.
Last year, Fiji won the Global Inclusion Awards, an award given by Child Youth and Finance International (CYFI) in recognition of Fiji’s efforts in promoting financial literacy among youth and children.
PFIP is a Pacific-wide programme that has helped over 1.5 million low-income Pacific islanders gain access to financial services and financial education. It achieves these results by funding innovation with financial services and delivery channels, supporting policy and regulatory initiatives, and empowering consumers.
PFIP operates from the UNDP Pacific Office in Suva, Fiji and has offices in Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Solomon Islands. It is jointly administered by the UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and receives funding from the Australian Government, the European Union and the New Zealand Government.