Corporate partnerships are one way public schools are able to successfully implement specialized programs. For several years, Stratford School System’s BEST (Business Education Support Team) Program has partnered with Sikorsky Credit Union to bring financial literacy to students in Stratford. Recently, Sikorsky Credit Union presented a $1,000 mini-grant for Financial Literacy to the Stratford Board of Education.
 
Stratford’s BEST is designed to promote excellence by supporting teachers in their classroom efforts, and operates in many areas, from mentoring to scholarships. Stratford’s BEST provides grants for innovative and outstanding projects that otherwise would not be funded. Since 1987, over 50,000 students have benefited from BEST.  Grants are awarded in a wide variety of subject areas, from academics to early childhood literacy, career development, community service and the arts.
 
This year’s grant went to assist kindergarten teacher Vittorio Pillo with a project that will teach the basics of sharing, saving and spending.  Ms. Pillo commented: “Stratford's kindergarten classrooms are so excited to learn about and create Moonjars this April.  Learning about how to Save, Share, and Spend will be much more fun now with these great tools to take home and use with our families!"

 “Over the years, I have seen the importance of financial literacy,” mentioned Dan Ruskin of Sikorsky Credit Union, who oversees the Credit Union’s High School Internship program. ‘Understanding finances is not something that is just for high schoolers or adults—every age can benefit from developing good financial habits.”   Stratford’s BEST is one of many community organizations that receive support from Sikorsky Credit Union.