PUPILS at a primary school in Dursley have become the first in the district to run their own savings bank.

In conjunction with Stroud Valleys Credit Union and education group LifeSavers, children in years 3 and 4 (Cedar Class) at Dursley Primary School will be able to make small weekly deposits into personal savings accounts.

Teachers hope that the project will teach children the value of money while also involving them in the management of the scheme.

Launched last Thursday (February 8), the savings bank will have a pupil act as a cashier each week with pupils able to bring in change to deposit into an online system.

The school is the first in the district, and one of only a handful in the county, to be taking part of the scheme.

“Cedar Class are really excited about being the first in the school to start up a savings club.” said Claire Sibert, a teacher at the school who is organising the project.

“It will be a fantastic way for the children to learn the value of money and of saving regularly.

"Children will also have the opportunity to become cashiers and be part of the running of the club, which is a valuable experience for them.”

Stroud Valleys Credit Union is a partner in the LifeSavers programme and will manage pupils' money through Junior Savers accounts.

John Appleton, director of Stroud Valleys Credit Union, said: “The whole ethos of the LifeSavers programme compliments the reasons why credit unions were created in the first place, back in the 19th century.

"Their founders wanted to help people help themselves financially, and give people more control over their lives.

"Getting into the habit of saving regularly, however small an amount, is a great way to start on this road and experience shows that habits started young stay with us when we’re older.”

Pupils will be able to withdraw from their accounts two times a year.