Monday, February 22, 2010

Fiscal Responsibility

This week’s blog is a call to action from the U.S. Treasury

We’re writing to ask for your help.

In December 2009, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced the National Financial Capability Challenge. They said that along with getting the economy back on track and getting smarter about financial regulation, we also need to make sure all Americans – but especially our youth – get the financial education they need to help them take responsibility for their financial futures. Treasury and Education are committed to working together on this issue.

The Challenge – an awards program for educators and high schools students that aims to encourage the teaching of personal finance – is our first step in a new partnership. An earlier version of the Challenge was organized by Treasury under the previous administration, and this expanded effort builds on that success. Our goal is to get one million high school students to take the Challenge, which includes a voluntary online exam, by April 9, 2010. To make that happen, we’ll need thousands of educators from across the country to register and get their students prepared. Two thousand educators have already signed up. It’s a good start, but we have a long way to go.

Will you please support our effort to reach out to high school teachers and leaders – and other educators working with high school students age 13-19, such as librarians, youth group leaders, and after-school program staff – to encourage them to sign up for the Challenge at by March 14.

We’re encouraging educators to take these steps:

1. View the video message from Secretary Duncan
2. Register for the Challenge by March 14th
3. Recruit their colleagues to participate (flier available here)
4. Prepare their students (using the free educator toolkit or their own resources)
5. Administer the online exam one day between March 15th and April 9th
6. Present official (printable) awards certificates to high-scoring students

All participating educators will receive personalized awards certificates, and educators in states with the highest participation rates will earn special distinction.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Heat Up the Second Semester!

Our battle with the weather and snow in DC is finally over and we are breathing easier. We hope you enjoyed FCCLA Week and had a great time promoting FCCLA throughout your communities. This week we have another installment of adviser advice.

When you started your FCCLA chapter what was the first national program you integrated into the classroom? Why?

Community Service because it can be tied into any class, any topics whether it be: a fundraiser for an organization, having a classroom speaker to inform on a community agency/topic and then having the class brainstorm how to help them, sponsoring a collection of needed items for an agency in the area, visit to a location to see a need in action, or providing ways that individual students or families can provide service to the agency.

Kathleen C. Buchanan, Riverheads High School, Virginia

The first National Program that I incorporated into my classroom was Families First. This national program fits in really well with the Parenting/Child Development units in Family and Consumer Sciences. My students completed projects in class that tied into each of the five units of Families First. My students really enjoyed each of the projects they completed and learned a lot about the importance of family.

Katrina Lewis, Konawa High School, Oklahoma

What is the most important thing you do during the second semester of the school year to build membership?

Membership in second semester is much harder I think. At the beginning of school I get the names of students enrolled in second semester and send them a personal invitation to join during the main membership drive in the fall. At that time I do not know most of those students, but the invitation brings them to the classroom with questions. I use freshman students to help me meet new freshmen that I will not have until second semester.

At the beginning of second semester I use the planned activities for National FCCLA Week to be inviting.

For a few, the promotion of STAR Events participation gets their attention. But of course that is a quick turn around time to get them started.

One way to introduce students to the organization in one day is exploring the state and national webpage with questions that I make.

Kathleen C. Buchanan, Riverheads High School, Virginia

Monday, February 8, 2010

Snow Day!

FCCLA is closed today due to the huge snowstorm over the weekend. We didn't want to leave you high and dry (but maybe a little warmer) with no Monday post. As today is the beginning of FCCLA Week, we encourage you leave your FCCLA Week plans and ideas in the comments section.

Enjoy the week!

Monday, February 1, 2010

What is the National Consultant Team?

FCCLA seeks the guidance of chapter advisers in the field when putting together professional learning programs for national conferences. We want to offer the best and most current topics to help advisers better integrate FCCLA programs and projects into the classroom. The National Consultant Team (NCT) consists of four to five advisers from all over the country who write and present training sessions.

The NCT met this week in Chicago, IL., to plan and write objectives for the sessions at FCCLA’s 2010 National Leadership Conference. Topics range from grant writing to competitive events to work/life balance. FCCLA is proud to have an experienced team of advisers working to provide these training opportunities.

FCCLA is currently adding to its team! If you or an adviser you know is interested in working on national projects, please see the Chapter Adviser section of the website to read the application. Applications are due March 1.