SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Glenn Rossman, Cynthia Dunlop

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The Canadian Foundation for Economic Education Launches "Talk With Our Kids About Money Day"

Program available for families and teachers to help youth better understand money matters in their lives

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 01/24/13 -- The Canadian Foundation for Economic Education (CFEE) today announced a new program for families, students and teachers that offers a simple way to help young Canadians learn more about money and personal finances. The program is being supported by BMO Financial Group.

Details were unveiled in Toronto today by CFEE along with the Honourable Ted Menzies, Minister of State (Finance) and representatives from BMO Financial Group, school boards, teacher associations, educators, parents/guardians, students, the private sector, and NGO's.

"Financial literacy means having the knowledge, skills and confidence to make responsible financial decisions," said The Honourable Ted Menzies, Minister of State (Finance). "The earlier in life people start educating themselves about financial literacy, the better equipped they will be when faced with life's important financial decisions."

The new program is "Talk With Our Kids About Money Day" - an annual event with the first "Day" scheduled for April 17, 2013. There will be both a "Home Program" for families and a "School Program" for students and teachers. In future years, the Day will be the third Wednesday in April.

"The goal is to encourage conversations with kids about financial matters," said Gary Rabbior, President of CFEE. "We are designating one day during the year when families and teachers can make a point of talking with kids about money - whether around the breakfast or dinner table, at bedtime, in a classroom, or reading and listening to a news or entertainment program."

CFEE will provide support to "Talk With Our Kids About Money" activities all year long.

The School Program will launch first in the greater metropolitan areas of Toronto and Montreal and will expand across the country over the next three years. For the School Program, a Teachers' Kit will be provided to all schools registering to participate. Complete, easy-to-use lesson plans will be provided to Grade 7 teachers in a wide range of subject areas - from social studies, to math, science, music, art, and others. It is hoped that, on that day, most if not all grade 7 teachers in a school will teach a lesson in their subject area that will focus on a money issue or topic. The new website will also provide additional supports for teachers. The lesson plans will provide opportunities for building links, as possible, to the Home Program so that family activities can build on lessons from school.

The Home Program is being launched nationally this year. For the Home Program, families with children of all ages will be provided with online access to ideas, activities, stories, resources, tools, videos, and more to begin, or continue, money-related conversations with their kids. Support resources will be organized by age range and will focus on activities that are fun, engaging, easy to do - and educational. Hopefully kids won't be the only ones learning.

Families and teachers interested in the program can visit the website at www.talkwithourkidsaboutmoney.com. The website includes sample resources and will continue to develop and expand up to, and beyond, the first Talk With Our Kids About Money Day on April 17th, 2013.

"Many Canadian households are sitting on fragile ground financially today, and this has a ripple effect that can negatively impact our economy on the whole if conditions don't improve," noted Mr. Rabbior. "We have a responsibility to the next generation to make sure they are better prepared for their money decisions and challenges than past generations."

"BMO is proud to support this new program, as it aligns with our ongoing mission of Making Money Make Sense and promoting financial literacy," said L. Jacques Menard, Chairman of BMO Nesbitt Burns and Co-Chair of the Task Force on Financial Literacy. "The Talk with Our Kids About Money Day sends a strong signal to parents on the importance of having frank and open discussions that will help their children become more confident in their decisions about money."

The new program, offered by CFEE, and supported by BMO, includes:


--  Website with resources, ideas, activities, etc. for families and
    teachers 
--  Teachers' Kit for schools in the greater metropolitan areas of Toronto
    and Montreal registering to participate (plus additional resources,
    tools and supports on the website) expanding to other provinces
    beginning in 2014 
--  Interactive contests such as: a poster competition; a video competition;
    and other activities that can help to share family, school, and youth
    experiences related to learning about money

B-roll footage will be available via satellite on Thursday, January 24th at 3:00 - 3:15 p.m. Eastern.


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About CFEE:

CFEE is a federally chartered, non-profit, non-partisan organization, founded in 1974, that works to improve economic and financial literacy and enterprising capability. CFEE works collaboratively with ministries and departments of education along with school boards, schools, educators, and teacher associations. CFEE also engages in activities to support and assist newcomers and past immigrants to Canada, and the general public including print resources, videos, workshops, and online resources. Overall, CFEE aspires to help Canadians of all ages be better prepared to undertake their economic roles, responsibilities, and decisions with confidence and competence.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $525 billion as at October 31, 2012, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of retail banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

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