Piggott State Bank Staff Helps Educate Students on Finances

Thursday, March 6, 2014
Shawn Parker and Melinda Dunlap, with Piggott State Bank, cash William Lucas' fair premium check during their recent visit to PES. (courtesy photo)

For many the first banking experience is often the opening of a savings account or witnessing parents conducting banking business as youngsters. Thanks to local bankers, in late February the first graders at Piggott Elementary School had the opportunity get a sneak peak at the process of cashing a check.

Recently, the students had the chance to cash checks they had earned by entering art exhibits into the Clay County Fair. As part of the effort, the Clay County Fair Association graciously awarded the first graders either a blue or red ribbon for each exhibit. And, those ribbons were accompanied by a monetary award in the form of a written check. The ribbons and checks were then sent to Piggott Elementary School and distributed to the young artists by their teachers.

On Tuesday, Feb. 25, Shawn Parker and Melinda Dunlap, representing Piggott State Bank, went to each first grade classroom and set up mock teller windows. This enabled the excited students to endorse their checks and receive their money.

The process proved to be eventful for both the students and the bankers, as one by one, the children were called by name, and presented their checks at the "window" to be cashed. Each was greeted by the representatives from Piggott State Bank, the endorsements on the checks were verified and the kids received their cash and got a hearty "thank you" such as any adult customer would get.

One of the excited check-cashers exclaimed to her teacher, "This is just like grown-ups do."

Upon entering each classroom Parker and Dunlap took the opportunity to explain the process of cashing a check. They further reiterated the purpose of the endorsement and explained that a check is an instrument for transferring funds. Through this process the students were able to learn and gain a greater appreciation for the intent and purpose of a written check.

Piggott Elementary School principal Ms. Leann Mann expressed, "The students enjoy this process so much," noted PES principal Leann Mann. "It begins with a creative project and ends with a reward for hard work and effort. This process makes learning fun and exciting for them."

Piggott State Bank Executive Vice-President, Cody Knight, visited Piggott Elementary School in January and cashed the checks for the ABC pre-school students in a similar manner. "We are grateful to have the opportunity to take the bank to the students," he noted, "They get to learn, gain experience and walk away with cash in their pockets and smiles on their faces. It's also a lot of fun for us."

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