Cabrera Capital Sponsors SIFMAs Detroit Schools Stock Market Game Initiative

SIFMA Foundation’s 2010 Stock Market Game™ Detroit Schools Initiative Sponsored by Cabrera Capital Markets

In 2010, a pioneering grant from Cabrera Capital Markets helped breathe life back into Detroit’s public schools by making The Stock Market Game program available free of charge to students in one of the country’s most economically challenged areas.

The Challenge
Having suffered drastically in recent years, Detroit’s economic shortfalls have strained the once vibrant city’s infrastructure, causing serious financial issues for the school system and resulting in the worst student test performance ever seen. In recent national assessments, Detroit dropped to historic lows in reading and math, prompting demands for change from parents, educators and government leaders. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Urban District Assessment administered January-March 2009 shows Detroit’s fourth- and eighth-graders trailing 17 other large cities in reading, with 73% of the city’s fourth graders scoring below the “basic” level, meaning they lack skills that are the building blocks of reading. This mirrors the math exam results that were released in December 2009 – the worst in the test’s 40-year history.
According to Liz Boyd, spokeswoman for Gov. Jennifer Granholm, “Like the dismal math scores reported earlier, these scores cry out for dramatic change that will result in student achievement. We have to strive for all children to achieve and the system is failing these kids.

The Solution
The SIFMA Foundation’s Stock Market Game program has been proven to substantially raise student math scores on standardized tests and increase student investor knowledge. Moreover, teachers are more likely to engage in financial planning practices as a result of teaching the Stock Market Game. Finally, the first Nation’s Report Card on Economics released in 2007 found that students participating in a stock market game scored a statistically significant higher score on standardized tests than students who had not participated. Looking to the needs in Detroit and its own history of making The Stock Market Game available free of charge to help students in key cities across the country, Cabrera Capital Markets teamed up with the SIFMA Foundation to present the 2010 Detroit Schools Initiative.
Through Cabrera’s vision and support, schools and teachers across Detroit were given the opportunity during the Spring 2010 semester to gain free access to a program well positioned to address some of their most pressing educational needs. Hundreds of students have now had the transformative experience of taking part in the program – and this is just the beginning. With veteran teachers now on board, the Stock Market Game program will reach out to new teachers and students in the Fall semester ahead and, we hope, begin to counter some of the performance issues plaguing the Detroit schools.
Through this new and exciting partnership with Cabrera Capital Management, the SIFMA Foundation is pleased to report tremendous success in meeting and exceeding the targeted number of students projected for the grant. It is clear that the stimulus of Cabrera’s funding brought record results, as described below, and the SIFMA Foundation looks forward to building on this success in partnership with Cabrera in the Fall 2010 semester.

The Results
Participation in The Stock Market Game in Detroit area schools since Fall 2007:

Fall 2007 Spring 2008 Fall 2008 Spring 2009 Fall 2009 Spring 2010 Cabrera Program Change Spring’09–Spring’10
SCHOOLS 2 4 2 6 0 9 + 50 %
TEACHERS 2 6 2 8 0 11 + 38 %
STUDENTS 96 252 78 316 0 674 + 113 %
TEAMS 52 113 39 154 0 309 + 101 %

SMG Participation:
The percentage change from Spring 2009-2010 can be attributed to support from Cabrera Capital Markets. The number of students reached more than doubled during the Spring 2010 program. Spring 2010 participation was well above the HIGHEST semester since Fall 2007.

Team Scholarships:
In Spring 2010, all interested schools and teachers in Detroit were able to participate in The Stock Market Game at no cost, based on scholarships provided by Cabrera Capital Markets.

Game Dates and Regions:
Classrooms sponsored by Cabrera Capital Markets were in a separate competitive region (March 22, 2010 – May 28, 2010) which was made be available to all elementary, middle, and high school students.

InvestWrite Essay Competition:
A teacher webinar is under development to help recruit student InvestWrite essays in the Fall 2010 program.

Workshops and Webinars:
Ten online webinars were offered to Detroit area teachers outlining The Stock Market Game program and its implementation and best practices. The webinars were divided into four sections; Understanding SMG, Managing Student Portfolios, In the Classroom, and the InvestWrite Essay Competition. In the e-mail messages to teachers inviting them to join the webinars, recognition was given to Cabrera Capital Markets as the underwriter of the Detroit area Stock Market Game. In addition, recognition was given to Cabrera Capital Markets during the webinars.

E-mails were sent to all teachers in the Detroit area schools. E-mails were also sent and phone calls were made to principals in Detroit area schools to build awareness and interest. In each e-mail and phone call, recognition was given to Cabrera Capital Markets as the underwriter of the Detroit area Stock Market Game.

The following public schools, all classified Title 1, were represented in the Spring 2010 Detroit Cabrera Capital Markets program.

School Teams