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others. Of course, there are numerous other forms of high interest loans, and they can be compared and contrasted. And solutions have been proposed. What, for example, is the postal banking campaign and how does it address predatory payday loan centres? There are other things beyond interest


rates that impact savings. For example, the corporate tax rate has an impact on how many dollars from the corporate world are returned to governments to pay for the ser- vices we hold dear. As the Panama Papers made abundantly clear in 2016, money can be easily hidden in offshore tax havens. Mi- chael Cuenco at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives points out that 900 Cana- dian individuals and corporations were iden- tified as minimizing their tax returns. With close to 200 billion dollars sitting in the top tax havens around the world, the Canadian government ends up with about eight billion fewer dollars per year, according to the non- profit Canadians for Tax Fairness. Students could develop a plan for how to use that missing money in the event that our govern- ment closed tax loopholes.


Financial Literacy: Bring It On


In 2005, I wrote a book called Maththatmat- ters, a collection of 50 lessons linking mathe- matics and social justice. It was published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, who in June 2020 made the resource freely available


at policyalternatives.ca/publica-


tions/reports/math-matters. Looking back, these are the lessons that might fit well in a classroom talking about financial literacy:


LESSON TITLE


TOPIC


Who Runs the Show Corporations In the Zone


Side Lined Some “Fare” Better


Export Processing Zones


How Poverty Lines Are Determined


Social Assistance


Than Others The Weekend’s Here Unions Kidfluence


Totally SAP-ped Marketing to Kids


Welcome to the Club Comparing the Top and Bottom Decile


Structural Adjust- ment Programs


The Return of Tobin The Tobin Tax Hood


Just Desserts? Salary Comparisons


More recently, Maththatmatters 2 was pub- lished with 50 new lessons. Again, there are many options to work with to teach financial literacy. Here are a few of them:


LESSON TITLE Paying for It


Mouseprint Fare Prices


Mapping Access Thin


TOPIC Unpaid Labour


Shark Infested Waters Predatory Payday Loans


What the Large Print Giveth, the Small Print Taketh Away


Fair Transit Pricing Food Deserts


The Ontario Coalition Against Poverty’s Special Diet Allowance


Pillaging the Public Public Private Purse-P3s


Partnerships The government’s press release about the


new math curriculum explains “Educators will…continue to benefit from investments in professional development and math supports, including $10 million for board-based math learning leads, $15 million for school-based math learning facilitators and $15 million to support release time for educators to become expertly familiar with the curriculum.” While the timing of this new curricu-


lum is undeniably poor and the support for implementation insufficient, there is an op- portunity here. Let’s flip the script, and help students understand the world in order to change it for the better. n


David Stocker is a member of the Elementary Teachers of Toronto and author of Maththatmatters: A teacher resource linking math and social justice (eds. 1 and 2).


ELEMENTARY TEACHERS’ FEDERATION OF ONTARIO 29


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