#ThankATeacherPBC Thursday: Suncoast Teacher Honored for Providing Lifelong Financial Lessons for Students

Suncoast High School’s personal finance lessons teachers are adding up the accolades while also teaching important life-long lessons in financial literacy.

The school has been named as a top 100 and top 10 large school for the Best W!se High Schools teaching personal finance.

The program, sponsored by the Voya Foundation, provides a curriculum and resources for teachers to teach and measure financial literacy. The distinction recognizes schools with students who have an 80 percent pass rate in the program’s Certification Test.

According to its website, “W!se is a leading educational nonprofit based in New York City with a mission to improve the lives of young people and at-risk adults through programs that develop financial literacy and readiness for college and the workforce.”

The success of the program is a credit to the outstanding work that Suncoast teacher Tazeen Rashid provides in the classroom. In addition to the W!se training, Rashid also worked with the County Clerk & Comptroller’s office to create a Summer Financial Work Experience internship. In 2011, Suncoast Community High School AP/IB Economics teacher Tazeen Rashid heard Clerk & Comptroller Sharon R. Bock speak at the financial symposium of World Economic Forum in WPB, where she takes her students every year.

Following the presentation, Mrs. Rashid, approached Shannon Ramsey-Chessman, the Clerk & Comptroller’s Chief Operating Officer of Finance, expressing interest in collaborating with the Office to create a summer intern program for students interested in gaining exposure and experience in governmental finance practices. In response, Mrs. Ramsey-Chessman created the Summer Financial Literacy Internship program.

Over 80 Suncoast High School students have participated in the internship program since its inception The Clerk & Comptroller, Palm Beach County’s Summer Financial Literacy Internship program was recognized by Harvard University’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government as a 2017 Innovations in American Government Awards Bright Ideas.

“Mrs. Rashid has been integral to the success of the program.  She works tirelessly to find rigorous, relevant opportunity for her students.  Her academic leadership is outstanding,” said Suncoast High School Principal Karen Whetsell.

Rashid says she is inspired by her students’ interest in finance and that is what motivated her to seek the internship and promote financial literacy. Students feel this is very relevant and applicable to their lives. This year, Rashid has been recognized with a Governor’s Award for Financial Literacy from the Florida Council of Economic Education (FCEE).

Her students at Suncoast also placed first and third in the state for the FCEE’s Rockonomix, a student-produced music video parody project, that uses popular media to reinforce basic economic principles, and second place in the state for Stock Market Challenge. The Challenge gives K-12 students the opportunity to participate in an online investment simulation and manage a hypothetical $100,000 investment portfolio.

Thanking your favorite teachers is easy — visit the Thank a Teacher website at www.palmbeachschools.org/thankateacher. Business leaders can get information about offering discounts to teachers, sponsoring events at schools, or signing up to become a District business partner. Parents, students and community members can write online thank-you messages to teachers, and younger students can download a template to draw pictures that show why they love Palm Beach County’s teachers.