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News Release

New Jersey Department of
Banking and Insurance

Commissioner Tom Considine

For Immediate Release:
April 23, 2010

For Further Information:
Ed Rogan or Marshall McKnight (609) 292-5064

Commissioner Considine Teaches Literacy to Young People

BAYONNE –New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance Commissioner Tom Considine today visited Midtown Community School where he read to a third grade class, talked to them about his career and helped them understand the importance of financial literacy as part of Read Aloud Week and Financial Literacy Month. Considine returned to his native city for the second time this month following a launching of the state’s Financial Literacy Awareness program at Bayonne High School last Friday. The program has taught thousands of young people how to manage their personal finances. 

“I was very impressed with the interest level and attentiveness of the students, both at the high school and at Midtown,” said Commissioner Considine. “I remember what it was like to be a student in the springtime on a Friday. Yet these kids were really focused.”

Considine read two books and spoke to a class of 25 third grade children taught by Midtown Community School teacher Mrs. Maria Czuba. To acquaint the children with Arbor Day and the importance of environmental awareness as well as literacy, Considine read We Planted a Tree and We Are Extremely Very Good Recyclers. He also helped Mrs. Czuba kick off a unit on careers by discussing his role as Commissioner, and his prior position as an attorney.  He combined the discussion of career and literacy with financial literacy in an effort to prepare the young people for future units on individual money matters.

“In both Bayonne High and Midtown Community School, I saw yet more examples of Bayonne being a special place,” said Considine.  “From the work of Mayor Mark Smith to Principals Rich Baccarella and Christina Mercun, this is a place ahead of the curve as New Jersey moves to more prosperous times.”

Today’s classroom visit served in part as an elementary level primer for the Financial Literacy program, which is generally conducted at the high school level. Since 2006, staffs at DOBI and New Jersey’s financial institutions have taught thousands of young people how to establish and preserve good credit, set up a budget, open checking and savings accounts and guard against identity theft. The program has reached nearly 26,000 students in more than 300 public high schools from all 21 counties.

Program participants include the New Jersey Department of Education, New Jersey Coalition for Financial
Education, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, New Jersey Bankers Association, Mortgage Bankers
Association of New Jersey, New Jersey League of Community Bankers, New Jersey Credit Union League
and the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants.

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