School Community Financial Life Skills Resource Library


The Wealth Academy (TWA) encourages schools to provide an openly accessible and holistic financial life skills program including, but extending beyond the limitations of the financial literacy concepts existing within the Australian Curriculum.

The resources of The Wealth Academy are developed:

  • to develop the financial life skills of students
  • for teachers looking for new ways to connect students to the financial world in which students they will live
  • for facilitators and instructors wanting to better prepare youth for their financial life in the community
  • for all students, regardless of the subjects they choose in secondary and post-school education.


  • To develop the financial capability and well-being of students.
  • To provide resources for teachers, parents and the local business community to support the financial capabilities of secondary students.

Business model

This model brings together schools, the business community, professional associations and entities for the common purpose of better preparing Australian youth for the financial world in which they will live. The model consists of the following arrangements:

  • TWA produces yearly sets of online resources that support student financial capability
  • Professional associations and experts in industries related to financial education contribute to the development of these resources
  • Schools may choose to self-fund their access to the resoruces.
  • If a school chooses, resources are provided free to schools through local business-community sponsors
  • Local businesses pay a fee to The Wealth Academy.

The Wealth Academy also encourages financial service providers and youth-oriented charities to access the resources to use in their own client ecosystems.


Do students want to learn financial life skills? Here is what local and international research says.

Australia: In Australia, research related to youth financial literacy is scarce. However ASIC’s Understanding Money Report, published in 2005 included a survey of 12-17 year olds. The following findings were reported with percentages.

  • 70-90% of respondents want to learn more about money issues
  • 91% want to know more about their rights and responsibilities
  • 90% want to know more about saving
  • 88% want to know more about recognising a scam
  • 85% want to know more about planning for the financial future
  • 84% want to know more about budgeting
  • 84% want to know more about dealing with financial services providers
  • 83% want to know more about getting information about money
  • 83% want to know more about managing debt
  • 82% want to know more about understanding financial language
  • 80% want to know more about investing
  • 73% want to know more about dealing with credit cards

These research findings are perhaps surprising, but if we never talk to students about these things, perhaps we should not be surprised. The fact that financial 'literacy' conversations with most students relate to a calculation, it is little wonder that many student may display lack of interest with the topic.

International:  Research overseas shows similar findings. The best known and most referenced research is undertaken by Charles Schwabb.

The Teens and Money Survey includes the following findings.

  • 86% of teenagers say they would rather learn about money management in a class before making mistakes in the real world.
  • 75% of teenagers say that learning more about money management including budgeting, saving and investing, is one of their top priorities.
  • 54% of teens want to know how income tax works
  • 77% of teens think they are financially savvy, yet only 22% know how income tax works, 31% how credit card interest and fees work
  • 44% of teens want their parents to talk about how to invest money, 42% how to establish good credit and 33% how to budget money effectively

These findings reflect students having interests in financial/wealth concepts much broader than the limitations of our curriculum. This is why we have partnered with specialist associations who can provide specialist knowledge and skills.

 The Resource Pack

The resources are described in detail within the attachment below. It includes answers to the following questions?

  1. Do Australian students already get enough financial literacy education to prepare them for when they exit school?
  2. Why is it a School-Community Financial Life Skills program and not just focusing on students?
  3. What resources are included?
  4. How can a school incorporate the resources into the overall school program? (We provide 3 suggested models.)
  5. What quality control procedures are in place regarding resource development? 
  6. Why are professional associations and businesses built into the business model?
  7. What are the fees for community sponsors?
  8. Does this model align with government policy?
  9. Does the School-Community Financial Life-Skills Program align with government priorities?
  10. Does involvement in the program align with the Australian Professional Standards for Principals?
  11. What are the potential benefits for schools, students, parents and the business community?



Student perceptions of high school financial education

Media release

November 19, 2015

Students leaving high school without the financial education life skills they need

19/11/15 – Over 65% of first year tertiary students aged under 20, believe that their high school did not prepare them with the financial life skills they will need as adults. At a time when tens of thousands of final year secondary students are about to leave high school this is an alarming concern.

Ex-teacher and now Director of The Wealth Academy, Ken Swan says this is no surprise. “For too long our teenage children have been exiting school exposed to the complexity of the financial world, without a sound knowledge and set of skills to interact with that world.”

Despite the rhetoric from government and school systems, our schools seem to have given scant recognition to the importance of financial education. Only 12% of students think that their financial education at school was adequate. Most students’ comments were indicative of the following:

The school did the bare minimum teaching on the subject. There needs to be a massive overhaul of the financial teaching …
Almost all of my financial skills knowledge came from what my parents taught me, I gained next to nothing in my high school about it.

It appears that financial education opportunities in most schools are a game of chance. Most students do not choose subjects that include financial concepts within them, and even if they do, those concepts will be minimal.

Read more ...

Planning Tool for School-Community Partnerships

School-Community Partnerships Planning Tool

February, 2019

The need for school partnerships has never been greater.

This planning tool is aligned to three major documents that inform the establishment of school-community relationships and partnerships in Australian schools. They are:

  • The Guiding Principles for School-Business Relationships
  • The National School Improvement Tool
  • ASPA’s Strategic Policy: Putting it all together (Key Partnerships)
  • Australian Professional Standards for Principals: Widening Participation

Guiding Principles for School-Business Relationships

These Guiding Principles for School-Business Relationships are relevant for informal school-business relationships through to complex partnerships with formal governance arrangements, detailed documentation and long-term projects. The principles were developed through a comprehensive consultation process around Australia with schools, businesses, education departments, industry bodies, parent bodies and broker organisations.
The principles have been endorsed by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.

Read more

Australian Secondary Principals Association

The education of Australia’s adolescents is not only the responsibility of school principals, it is the responsibility of the entire community. The community must understand the emerging and changing nature of schooling and the work of principals. Australian education does not exist in a void, we must build partnerships into the global community.

(Strategic Policy – Putting it all together)

Australian Professional Standard for Principals

Professional Practice: Engaging and working the community
[Principals] build partnerships with the local community and external stakeholders so they are aware of the vision and values of the school and can contribute to its success.
Principals draw on expertise from other organisations to enhance and enrich the learning experience for students and their families
Read more 

National School Improvement Tool

School-community partnerships
The school actively seeks ways to enhance student learning and wellbeing by partnering with parents and families, other education and training institutions, local businesses.... All partners are committed to the common purposes and goals of partnership activities. Procedures are in place to ensure effective communications and to monitor and evaluate the intended impacts of the school’s partnerships.

Read more

2019 Planning Tool coverTWA_Partnership_Planning_Tool_2019.docx The Wealth Academy's School-Community Partnerships Planning Tool has been updated.

We encourage you to adjust and adapt the tool to match the particular needs of those forming the partnership.






Parents as financial role models

Young Canadians want mum and dad to be financial role models: CICA survey

TORONTO, October 19, 2011 – A national survey for the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) finds that parents who are most successful at teaching money management skills familiarize their children with the family’s financial situation.                                                                      

The CICA Youth Financial Literacy Study 2011, conducted by Harris/Decima, measured the financial literacy of Canadians aged 16-22. Nine-in-ten respondents (93 per cent) believe that parents should be good role models for responsible financial decisions and 83 per cent have approached their parents for advice about money management.

“Being open and transparent about money matters is a key element to opening doors of conversation, producing a higher level of trust and helping youth develop their own financial goals,” says Kevin Dancey, president and CEO, CICA.

Read more ...

Gaps in money knowledge

Young people have 'dangerous gaps' in money knowledge, charity says

By the Press Association

Young people are starting adult life with "dangerous gaps" in their money management skills, a study has found.

Two-fifths (42%) of 14 to 25-year-olds were unable to interpret the difference between being in credit and being overdrawn on a bank statement while about one in eight (13%) didn't know what an overdraft was, according to charity Pfeg (Personal Finance Education Group) and Barclays.

The survey of more than 1,800 young people found just 58% correctly identified the note "£200CR" on a bank statement as meaning an account was in credit.

Meanwhile, 8% of those surveyed wrongly thought an overdraft was a one-off loan from a bank with special low charges.

Over a quarter (28%) of young people did not know it would be better to opt for a low APR (annual percentage rate) than a higher one when taking out a credit card or a loan.

Read more ...

The world needs financial education

The World Needs Financial Education.. Here's Why

I started Khan Academy to help my cousins in math while my day job was being an investment analyst. It didn't take long, however, to realize that the same tools I was using to explain math could be helpful in finance as well. We had junior analysts at our firm who could use primers on accounting and investment analysis. Even more, I remember being struck by how my family and friends who were so knowledgeable in every other aspect of their lives were living by rules of thumb rather than any deep understanding of how money and markets work.

So I started making videos that explained how to think about stocks and bonds, macroeconomics and basic questions like when it is better to rent or buy. I also started to make videos explaining banking, credit, mortgages and some of the dynamics that seemed to be driving real estate values. At Khan Academy, our mission statement is 'a free world-class education for anyone, anywhere' and it was clear that a world-class education should now include an understanding of finance.

Read more ...

Gen Y .... struggles with debt

Gen Y has little understanding of financial planning, struggles with debt: study

The World Today By Lucy Carter

Financial planners say Generation Y are using debt to pay for their current lifestyles, rather than focus on their economic futures.
Alan Porritt: AAP

Generation Y struggles to save money and has very little understanding of financial planning, according to new research from a consulting firm.

Impact Leaders found up to one-third of 18 to 34 year olds have no savings and many struggle with high levels of debt.

Managing director Sonya Lipski says one in five young people would not be able to get their hands on $500 in an emergency.

"It's actually quite appalling and it's a statistic that not money people are willing to talk about," Ms Lipski said.

Read more ...

Wealth Health

What is wealth?

Macquarie Dictionary defines wealth as 'a large store of money and property' or 'a rich supply'.  For most of us it is a term we use in describing others, rather than ourselves.

The Wealth Academy certainly acknowledges this definition as it is one that is used globally with a common understanding. However, we at The Wealth Academy take this definition further. Not only do we see 'wealth' in terms of external possessions - money, assets; but we also see it as internal possessions - attitude, integrity, health in all of its dimensions.

Read more ...

THE WEALTH ACADEMY: We support those who value financial education