From education to employment

Martin Lewis launches first ever financial education textbook

100 free copies to 3,400 schools, funded by Martin Lewis, written by Young Money, supported by Govt.

After a long campaign financial education became part of the National Curriculum in 2014, yet to date there has been no financial education textbook to help teachers and pupils get to grips with this crucial new subject.

Today two of the leaders of that campaign have teamed together to publish ‘Your Money Matters’, the first ever curriculum-mapped financial education textbook which will be sent for free to senior schools. Written by the financial education charity Young Money, with guidance by Martin Lewis, the Money Saving Expert, who’s £325,000 personal donation funded the project.

The textbook, which is aimed at ages 15 to 16, has received the support of the Government.

All 3,400 state-funded schools in England will receive 100 free copies of the 150-page textbook, typically enough for 1 textbook per two pupils, as well as copies of a linked teacher’s guide.

Download Your Money Matters and the accompanying Teacher’s Guide here

What is in the textbook?

Financial education is currently primarily split across the Maths and Citizenship curriculums, as well as within the non-statutory element of PSHE.  Your Money Matters is aimed at helping secondary school students make informed choices about managing their money now and in the future, within that curriculum.

The educational textbook contains facts and information as well as interactive activities and questions for the students to apply their knowledge.  

The chapters are as follows:

  1. Savings – ways to save, interest, money and mental health
  2. Making the most of your money – budgeting, keeping track of your budget, ways to pay, value for money, spending)
  3. Borrowing – debt, APR, borrowing products, unmanageable debt.
  4. After school, the world of work – student finance, apprenticeships, earnings, tax, pensions, benefits.
  5. Risk and reward – investments, gambling, insurance.
  6. Security and fraud – identify theft, online fraud, money mules.

Why do we need a textbook? The textbook is important for teaching young adults how to manage their money at a time when young people are facing an increasing number of complex financial decisions. 

It responds to the findings identified in the report ‘Financial Education: Two Years On – Job Done?’ published in May 2016 by the APPG on Financial Education for Young People, which pointed to an urgent need for resources and support for teachers and students. The report highlighted a lack of financial education resources in schools and provided a number of policy recommendations.

Martin Lewis100x100Martin Lewis comments:

“I passionately believe that financial education could have a huge impact on the future wellbeing of millions of young people.  When we got financial education on the national curriculum in 2014, we celebrated thinking the job was done. We were wrong. Schools have struggled with resources and there’s been little teacher’s training.  Something else was needed to make it easy for schools and teachers.”

“I still wrestle with whether it’s right that a private individual should fund this.  Yet nothing else was forthcoming, and pragmatics outweigh principles. We live in one of the world’s most competitive consumer economies, with companies spending billions on advertising, marketing and teaching their staff to sell, yet we don’t get any buyer’s training.  That needs to change.  We need to break the cycle of debt.  The best place to teach is in the classroom – I hope this textbook will help make that easier.”

Michael Mercieca, CEO at Young Money comments:

“We’re delighted to have worked with Martin Lewis on this pioneering project to produce these important educational materials which will help many students and teachers across the country. Financial education is a topic that still doesn’t always get the recognition in the education system that it deserves, despite its fundamental importance for everyday life. It’s vital to the personal wellbeing of individuals and to the country that we improve the education of young people in this area to give them the best possible chance of success in the future.”

Julian Knight MP, Chair of the APPG on Financial Education for Young People comments:

“I’m delighted that we now have a practical resource for the classroom to help ensure financial education is more consistent in schools and that students leave the education system adequately prepared for their financial futures.  A need for classroom resource was a key factor identified in the APPG’s Report ‘Financial Education in Schools: Two Years On – Job Done?’ so the brand new textbook and teacher guide are an excellent outcome of the report.’

Nick GibbNick Gibb MP, Minister for School Standards comments:

“Economic and financial education are an important part of a broad and balanced curriculum, and provide the essential knowledge that young people need to manage their finances and succeed in the modern world. Both the Department for Education and HM Treasury support high-quality resources for schools to help deliver this, and I would like to commend Martin Lewis and Young Money for making this new textbook available.”

Sample Questions – test your own financial capability! 

  1. Explain the advantage of compound interest compared to simple interest.
  2. Which is better for a saver – an account which calculates interest daily, monthly or yearly?
  3. Do you know what your personal savings allowance is?
  4. Explain the difference between APR and AER.
  5. What does the term PAYE stand for?
  6. Explain the difference between a standing order and a direct debit.
  7. What is the difference in law between returning a faulty good within 30 days and after 30 days?
  8. How might changes in the UK base rate of interest affect borrowers?
  9. What is the total amount of savings per authorised institution that are protected under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)?
  10. What is phishing?

About Young Money (formerly pfeg): Part of Young Enterprise, supports all educators in developing the financial capability of the young people they work with.  We are a trusted and valued provider of knowledge, resources and training to anyone teaching children and young people how to manage money. In 2016/17 Young Money delivered financial education training to over 1,400 teachers.92% of teachers Young Money trained said following training they were now likely to deliver financial education in their schools. Young Money is the Secretariat for the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Financial Education for Young People. Julian Knight MP is the Chair of the APPG on Financial Education for Young People. 

About Martin Lewis OBE, the Money Saving Expert: A campaigning broadcast journalist who is founder and Chair of, the UK’s biggest money website – over 13 million have opted to receive his weekly email. He’s due to start the eighth series of his own prime-time ITV show soon and is resident expert on many others. In 2016 he founded and funded the influential Money and Mental Health Policy Institute charity, which he now chairs. Over the years he’s spearheaded major financial justice campaigns including bank charges reclaiming (over seven million template letters downloaded) and PPI reclaiming (over six million) and a successful large-scale campaign to get financial education on the national curriculum. He was awarded an OBE for his contribution to consumer rights and charity work, in almost every poll he was seen as the most-trusted person on the EU referendum, and, according to Google, is Britain’s most searched-for man.

About Young Enterprise: A national charity that motivates young people to succeed in the changing world of work by equipping them with the work skills, knowledge and confidence they need. Founded in 1962, Young Enterprise is part of global network JA-YE operating in 120 countries. 

Answers to the Financial Education quiz:

1. Compound interest means you get interest on interest. So if you earn interest in year one, in year two you get the interest both on what you saved and on the interest in the first year. Simple interest does not do this, meaning that at the same rate, over time the compound interest method will generate a higher amount in interest.

2. Daily calculation is better for a saver (this is actually the method most financial institutions use).

For example:

Take a look at the following table, which shows what would happen if banks were to calculate the interest payable on £5,000 at a rate of 3% for 5 years over different compounding periods.










3. A basic rate taxpayer (20% tax on income) can earn £1,000 interest on savings per tax year without paying tax on it.

Higher rate taxpayers (who move into the 40% tax bracket) can earn £500 interest on their savings before being taxed.

Additional rate taxpayers (whose income extends into the 45% tax bracket) get no allowance.

4. The interest rate you receive when you save money in an account is known as the Annual Equivalent Rate (AER). The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is the what you are charged for borrowing products.  Both take into account any fees and charges.

5. Pay As You Earn.  This is the way most employees pay tax – it is deducted by the employer – so the amount of money received comes after tax is taken off.

6. Standing order – You are in control, you instruct your bank to pay the money to a particular person or company, it is your responsibility to change the payment details (e.g. the date or amount) if they need to be changed. Direct debit is an instruction to your bank to release money from your account to pay bills and other amounts automatically, the billing company has control.

7. If you return a faulty item within 30 days, you are entitled to a full refund. You can still return the item after this, but the supplier can then offer a repair or replacement instead.

8. The official UK interest rate (often called the base rate) is reviewed and set eight times a year by the Bank of England. Many lenders, especially with mortgages, tend to move their rates in line with this rate – so when it rises so do they.  Some rates are directly linked to it, at other times the lender can choose whether and how much it tends to match it depending on its own competitive advantage.  Yet some rates such as fixed rate mortgages, or high interest credit cards may not move at all.

9. FSCS protects up to £85,000 per authorised institution or up to £1,000,000 for six months after major life events (eg death, or sale of a house)

10. Phishing is a criminal activity which attempts to mislead people into providing personal information and often bank account details. This is often done online through the sending of fake emails or pop-up messages.

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