NISKAYUNA — Financial literacy instruction in the Niskayuna School District will be strengthened thanks to a Board of Education member’s $5,000 raffle winnings.
Niskayuna board member John Buhrmaster recently had his business card pulled as part of a drawing at an industry event, winning him a $5,000 donation to the nonprofit of his choice.
The funding will be used to develop a financial literacy curriculum for use at the elementary, middle and high school levels in Niskayuna.
Representatives of BFS Group, which sponsored the contest, presented a check to Buhrmaster, Superintendent Susan Kay Salvaggio, and Social Studies Director Alfred Sive at Niskayuna High School on June 19.
BFS Group works exclusively with community banks across the country, providing supplemental benefits and financing strategies. Buhrmaster is president of First National Bank of Scotia and vice chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of America.
“We greatly appreciate this contribution from the BFS Group to help create what will be an incredibly valuable program for our schools and our students,” Buhrmaster said. “There is a need for this kind of instruction, and I know we will put together an excellent program in Niskayuna.”
The donation is part of the Princeton, N.J.-based BFS Group’s “Drive to 125” campaign, an effort to donate $125,000 in total this year to nonprofit organizations and charities in on behalf of local community banks across the country.
“The banks we work with are helping their communities every day, and we wanted to be part of that with this campaign,” said BFS Vice President for Northeast Sales Zachary Low. “The financial literacy program fits into this perfectly.”
Niskayuna Social Studies Director Alfred Sive will work with at least two teachers from each level to develop an economic and financial literacy curriculum to be targeted to each academic level. It will incorporate the work of the Council for Economic Education.
“This is a really fine opportunity for us,” Sive said. “Financial and economic literacy is so critical. Our goal is to create lessons and materials that are dynamic and relevant, and have an impact on students and their futures as consumers and potential business leaders.”