IBC Bank-Houston and Port Houston Elementary School Celebrate 1st Anniversary of Dolphinville Minitropolis®
(JAN. 24, 2020) HOUSTON - Today, students and educators at Port Houston Elementary School, alongside officials from IBC Bank-Houston, celebrated the 1st anniversary and annual opening of Dolphinville Minitropolis® . Minitropolis® is a financial literacy program that provides students an opportunity to see how a community operates by giving them a variety of real-world positions in mini stores and mini-city government. IBC Bank partners with schools and local businesses to create this mini city and bring classroom learnings to life. The program was created by IBC Bank in 1996 and currently operates in more than 25 elementary schools across Texas.
"The Minitropolis® program prepares students for the social and financial situations they will experience in adulthood," said Jay Rogers, Chairman & CEO of IBC Bank-Houston. "IBC Bank believes in the importance of inspiring our communities to ‘Do More,' which is why we're so passionate about educating the next generation on financial literacy. We're excited for the students to experience Dolphinville Minitropolis® for another year and build on their learnings."
This year, students in pre-K through fifth grade will again manage the mini city by working at IBC Bank at Dolphinville, Kroger, Dolphinville Police Department, Port Fit Gym, The Green Thumb and the treasury department. New to Dolphinville this year is the bookstore, Day's Desserts, Sorto's Snacks, Rivas' Reels, Novelties-R-Us and the arcade. The new stores were developed from student ideas.
"We've seen an increase in student attendance and engagement since the beginning, and are excited to have a program in our school that makes our students passionate about learning," said Victor Garcia, Port Houston Elementary School principal.
Dolphinville teaches students about the importance of managing their money and skills like paying bills, balancing a budget, writing checks, making deposits, withdrawing money and saving for the future. These skills are practiced at IBC Bank at Dolphinville, which is managed by fifth-grade students, overseen by the bank's student president and student vice president.
Dolphinville Minitropolis® opened at Port Houston Elementary in 2018. Since then, the program has seen great success with student engagement and attendance, by rewarding students throughout the year with "Dolphin Dollars," the mini city's currency. Daily attendance, good behavior and a weekly paycheck are 3 ways that students can earn "Dolphin Dollars" to spend during Minitropolis®.
All students and teachers are involved in the creation, implementation and facilitation of the Minitropolis® program. In order to learn the important financial literacy concepts that this program teaches, each grade level worked in the treasury department and IRS, sorting and counting "Dolphin Dollars." Fifth-grade students were elected to City Council positions, including a student Mayor of Dolphinville, Daniela Diaz.
Beginning today, Dolphinville will be open every Friday during the Spring semester for students to practice social, academic and real-world skills. A Spring Showcase is scheduled for May 22 to close out the 2019-2020 school year.
In 2018, IBC Bank-Houston employees donated over 6,000 books to Port Houston Elementary during their Minitropolis® spring showcase. IBC Bank employees spent months gathering book donations from customers and the community through collection boxes placed in each of IBC Bank-Houston's 14 retail locations. IBC Bank employees began the Port Houston Elementary Book Drive after discovering empty bookshelves in the school's library.
About IBC Bank-HoustonIBC Bank-Houston is a member of International Bancshares Corporation (NASDAQ: IBOC), a $12 billion multi-bank financial holding company headquartered in Laredo, Texas, with 189 facilities and 285 ATMs serving 89 communities in Texas and Oklahoma. International Bancshares Corporation was ranked 22nd on Forbes' prestigious list of 100 Best Banks in America in 2019. IBC Bank-Houston has been serving the area since 1997 and has a retail branch network of 14 locations. MEMBER FDIC / INTERNATIONAL BANCSHARES CORPORATION. Follow our Facebook page, @IBCBankWeDoMore. More information is available at ibc.com.