Kuala Lumpur, 10 November 2021 – With schools gradually transitioning back to physical classroom settings, students of Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (Cina) Kuang Hwa in Kuantan have found that they no longer need to bring cash to school. Instead, their school is now equipped with a cashless payment system which accepts debit cards as a payment method, thanks to its collaboration with Hong Leong Bank (“HLB” or “the Bank”) for ‘HLB@School’ program which was piloted in October 2020.
Under this programme, the Bank has provided cashless payment and digital banking tools to the students, cashless payment terminals for the school canteen and a digital collection solution to the school for school fees as part of its efforts to promote going cashless and the usage of digital banking as part of its financial literacy programme and, as a life skill for primary school students.
Over 400 Kuang Hwa students have started using the HLB 3-in-1 Junior Account-i which comprises of a savings account with fixed deposit and, a reloadable debit card. On top of that, it comes with access to the HLB Pocket Connect app, a first in-market interactive digital banking platform for young digital natives and their parents. The HLB Pocket Connect is a simple to use mobile banking platform with proprietary Earn, Save and Spend features that aims to teach children financial literacy and responsibility with guidance from their parents. These students can easily track their own pocket money, expenditure and savings giving them a deeper understanding on the value of money and empowering them to take charge of their finances. Similarly, parents are able to manage and monitor their children’s bank account anytime, anywhere through the HLB Connect online and mobile banking platform.
Galvin Yeo, HLB’s General Manager of Personal Financial Services for Deposits & Digital said, “We look forward to more collaborations with schools in providing services that can cultivate financial literacy as a life skill amongst students with simple and seamless cashless payment tools and introduce them early to a digital banking experience. Introducing this cashless and digital banking knowledge at school is also in line with the swift transformation that’s currently happening in the market as more businesses and consumers shift towards cashless payments due to the pandemic.”
Under the ‘HLB@School’ program, the school canteen is equipped with the Bank’s All-in-One Point of Sale (“POS”) terminal that will allow the students to make cashless payments with their reloadable debit card and minimise contact risk. In addition, Kuang Hwa primary school will benefit from the JomPay biller service through HL ConnectFirst FastCollect, a quick and convenient solution to collect school related fees. This will provide payment flexibility and make it easier for parents to manage their children’s school fees digitally through any online or mobile banking platforms. To make the partnership even more holistic, HLB has planned to conduct a financial literacy program, the HLB DuitSmart Workshop for the school as part of its commitment towards empowering more Malaysians to start having a positive relationship with money and develop money management skill as an important life skill.
Gan Feek Moi, Principal of Kuang Hwa Primary School said, “Running a school during the pandemic has pushed us to rethink how we can approach education. There are more digital elements and strategies involved as we adjust and adapt to the new normal. We are excited to work with HLB to help kickstart the implementation of a cashless ecosystem for our school that will enable digital and financial literacy amongst students and minimise contact risk at the canteen. From an administrative perspective, it will also help digitally streamline the payments collection and reconciliation process for us.
Dato Ng Chong Hin, Chairman of the Parents Teacher Association of Kuang Hwa echoed the sentiment in the need to push for digital and financial literacy in this new normal and prepare for the next normal in the post-pandemic era.
“As a parent, through this pandemic we have learnt that it is a necessity to be multi-literate. Digital and financial literacy is as important as learning to read, write and count to function and survive in the increasingly digital-first world today. We highly support this partnership between the school and HLB as understanding the use of technology and money matters have become a life skill. The ‘HLB@School’ program will empower our children to cultivate a healthy relationship with their finances as well as learn to manage their pocket money and expenditure in a fun and engaging manner using digital tools.”