School Bank Teaches Kids The Value Of A Dollar
Reprinted from The Business Monthly, February 2013

It's bank day at Resurrection St. Paul School in Ellicott City, and kids are lined up to make their deposits. Some have just $1 to add to their savings accounts. Others have $5, and one especially lucky fifth grader has $40, a birthday gift from his grandparents.

Resurrection's Panther Savings Bank has been open for business four days a month since 2005. A mini "branch" of Howard Bank, students serve as tellers, are in charge of bank day announcements, help younger students fill out deposit slips and even act as security guards. Students are also charged with handing out stickers, rulers and other items as incentives for making deposits.

Howard Bank also has school banks at Waterloo and Clemons Crossing Elementary Schools and Atholton Adventist Academy.

On school bank days, a Howard Bank representative is present to monitor the activity and transport the money and checks to the nearest branch.

Daphne Dressler, manager of Howard Bank's Centennial Place Branch, runs the program at Resurrection St. Paul, and she sees benefits to in-school banking beyond teaching kids to save.

One "is the employment aspect," she says. "It teaches the kids that a good work ethic, confidentiality, commitment and professionalism are important in the workplace. They learn early on that they make a difference and how their behavior affects others."

The in-school banks are open for about an hour two days a month. There's no minimum deposit, and there are no service fees. Since the banks can handle just deposits, kids have to go to a nearby Howard Bank branch to withdraw money.

Howard Bank has long had a deep commitment to teaching financial literacy, especially to kids.

"Having bankers teach money management is a real boon to parents who may not have enough expertise to teach sound savings methods to their children, says Howard Bank President and CEO Mary Ann Scully.

"Kids need to be taught, for example, about the incredible power of compounding if they begin saving when they're young. It's important for children to learn that someday they will be responsible for their own financial security. They should not have a sense that someone else will provide for them (in old age), especially as our government deficit continues to grow."

While $2 a month may not seem like much, it can add up over time. One thing the school banks can teach is patience. Another is setting financial goals and working towards them.

"Teaching the kids why saving is important for their future, and how to save are valuable lessons for them to learn," Dressler says. "Our school banks plant the seeds of lifetime savers and smart money managers. They learn valuable lessons and don't even realize it."

Howard Bancorp is a bank holding company with total assets of $402 million as of December 31, 2012. Its principal operating subsidiary, Howard Bank, located in Ellicott City, MD, is a growth-focused community bank serving businesses, professionals and individuals in the Greater Baltimore area through five full service branches and also a regional office in Annapolis, MD. Howard Bank is a wholly owned subsidiary of Howard Bancorp (NASDAQ: HBMD). For information, call 410-750-0020 or visit www.howardbank.com

Source: Howard Bancorp, Inc.