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Media Advisory

Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
901 South Bond Street, Suite 540
Baltimore, Maryland 21231
Phone: 443-287-9960 | Fax: 443-287-9920

Media Advisory:
Stocks in the Future Graduates More than 100
Middle School Students in Baltimore Area

May 6, 2008
TO: Education reporters, assignment editors, producers
FROM: Amy Lunday / 443-287-9960 / acl@jhu.edu
RE: Stocks in the Future graduates more than 100 middle school students in Baltimore area

Stocks in the Future, a program that teaches local middle- school kids about investing while giving them extra incentive to do well in school, will hold graduation ceremonies for 110 students in the next few weeks at four Baltimore-area schools.

The SIF program, which allows previously underperforming students with good attendance and good grades to buy and own real stocks, will honor graduating eighth graders at Barclay Middle School and Francis Scott Key Middle School in Baltimore City and Deep Creek and Dundalk middle schools in Baltimore County.

"This is a significant year for us," said SIF executive director Anne Swain of the Center for Social Organization of Schools at The Johns Hopkins University. "Not only are we graduating our largest class ever, our incentives for students are working."

A recent assessment by researchers at Johns Hopkins demonstrated the positive impact of SIF on student achievement. Last year's seventh-graders who took part in the SIF program scored 31 percent higher on the Hopkins Short Achievement Test, which included reading comprehension, vocabulary and mathematics, than did students in a control group, and sixth-grade participants' scores were 18 percent higher.

"The excitement and unique nature of our efforts have drawn notice, and we're now expanding SIF into at least two to four additional schools in the coming academic year," Swain said.

The scripted curriculum for SIF, developed at the Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins, teaches strategies for earning, saving and investing money. By attending school regularly and improving their grades, students earn "SIF Dollars" that enable them to buy publicly traded stocks, which they receive when they graduate from high school and turn 18.

On Wednesday, May 7, 25 students will showcase their personal projects during a graduation ceremony at Barclay School at 11:20 a.m. On Friday, May 9, another 17 will do the same at Francis Scott Key School at 10:20 a.m.

On May Thursday, May 15, 29 students in Baltimore County's Deep Creek School will graduate at 10 a.m. Then Dundalk School and 39 students will celebrate their graduation from the program on Friday, June 6, at 8:30 a.m.

"These students were identified as needing incentives to improve school performance," said Patricia Bernstein, the program's founder and original funder. "Now we have data and graduates that show it really works. We are getting additional sponsors joining the effort and schools are coming to us to participate. We look forward to our future growth."

Stocks in the Future is in seven schools and serves 400 students in Maryland and the District of Columbia. The program was founded in 2000 in Baltimore.