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Saving money

New in-school student bank opens in Tioga

Submitted Photo Central Elementary sixth-graders, from left, Piper Moberg, Lane Lenzen, Weston Lalim, Jaren Raan, Graham Schaffer and Jeremiah Walsh, who serve as student bankers at the Pirate Branch of The Bank of Tioga, set up to take deposits on the branch’s opening day Oct. 29.

TIOGA — A student-run Pirate Branch of The Bank of Tioga opened at Central Elementary in Tioga Oct. 29.

The student bank is designed to introduce the economic concept of saving money at an early age and reinforce this idea throughout the elementary, middle, and high school curriculum, according to the announcement of the opening by the bank and Tioga School District. In addition, the bank demonstrates that saving money should be part of a student’s financial plan for his or her future, as well as increases parental involvement in children’s lives through banking activity.

All students K-6 will have an opportunity to bank every Friday morning, and six sixth graders who serve as student bankers will rotate each week – Weston Lalim, Jaren Raan, Graham Schaffer, Piper Moberg, Jeremiah Walsh and Lane Lenzen. The Bank of Tioga employees will volunteer to assist with the student-run branch.

Graham Schaffer, a student banker shared, “I am excited to help other kids learn to save.”

This is the second in-school branch for The Bank of Tioga, as the DC Branch with Divide County Community School District opened in 2018.

“The purpose of this bank is to instill the habit of saving in our young people. We want to see lifelong savers,” said Joy Sparks, The Bank of Tioga financial literacy coordinator. “I am excited to be able to bring this to Central Elementary and allow students to observe the banking process. Saving money is a great skill to learn early. We should all be setting savings goals and working to achieve them.”

This student-branch structure and financial literacy curriculum provided by The Bank of Tioga, is made possible by the bank’s mission to reinvest 10% of its pre-tax income back into the community.

The goal of the program is to provide students, K-12, with knowledge to make sound financial decisions. Additionally, the program collaborates with school districts to promote financial literacy and this expanded in northwest North Dakota with the hiring of Sparks in the fall of 2016.

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