Finance Lab

Learning cooperative values in school

A Finance Lab is a project run by students at a public or private high school to promote group entrepreneurship, financial education and cooperation.

Finance Lab activities include:

  • Collecting payments for school activities Students can go to the Finance Lab to pay for school-organized activities or services, such as prom tickets, a field trip to New York or cafeteria meal coupons. They can pay in cash or by debit card or prepaid card using a payment terminal.
  • Funding or sponsoring school projects Examples include buying speakers for the student radio station, buying microwaves for the cafeteria or sponsoring a fashion show at the school. These donations and sponsorships come out of the budget allocated by local caisses.
  • Supporting the start-up and development of student-run businesses This includes both monetary support and educational tools for creating business plans and budgets. Example: an advance to buy a popcorn machine for a group of students who want to set up a popcorn stand during lunch period.

A board of directors supervised by adults

Each Finance Lab is governed by a board of directors elected at an annual meeting by members (students of the school).

A school representative, caisse representative and youth cooperative entrepreneurship agent (APECJ) work together to help the students run the Finance Lab.

A win-win partnership

Finance Labs are created through a partnership between a school and a caisse, where the school provides a space and the caisse provides equipment and an operating budget. As a result, students get the chance to carry out an educational, cooperative and entrepreneurial project and gain first-hand experience running a business based on cooperative principles.

For more information about starting a Finance Lab at your school, email us - This link will open in a new window.