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#1 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This has been a point of discussion between dh and I for a while now as we have opposing views on the subject. Who should teach our children about money matters? I believe as parents it is our responsibility to teach it, starting with pocket money etc where as dh thinks we should leave it to teachers at school.

If you believe it's the parents responsibility or even if you don't, how do you handle pocket money? Do you just give it weekly or do you believe your child needs to earn it by doing jobs (ie emptying trash gets you $x and emptying dishwasher earns you $y)?
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#2 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:31 PM
 
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This has been a point of discussion between dh and I for a while now as we have opposing views on the subject. Who should teach our children about money matters? I believe as parents it is our responsibility to teach it, starting with pocket money etc where as dh thinks we should leave it to teachers at school.

If you believe it's the parents responsibility or even if you don't, how do you handle pocket money? Do you just give it weekly or do you believe your child needs to earn it by doing jobs (ie emptying trash gets you $x and emptying dishwasher earns you $y)?
I wouldn't depend on the school to teach it. We teach it ourselves, by involving our kids in financial decisions and budgeting.

We pay pocket money weekly. It is not tied to chores, but we do expect our kids to take a large part in the housework. We all pitch in with the housework and we all have a part of the family income.
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#3 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:33 PM
 
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I think it should be taught in schools, but I certainly didn't learn it there. I spent hours upon hours in wood shop, and never had a single class in money management.

I guess I don't see why your dh wouldn't want to teach it at home. Maybe it's the method that he disagrees with.
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#4 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:36 PM
 
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Parent's responsibilty to teach life skills.

** I learned some from my parents, but not enough.. that is I really didn't understand how debt could rob one of future choices.

However, regardless of the OP's disagreement between them on who should teach it, is if it's not currently be taught in shcools (most are not), then it becomes the real question of do you want your child(ren) to have this knowledge and if so then you must teach it to them.
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#5 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:39 PM
 
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It would be nice to get it in the schools, esp for those children who don't get it at home. But, not gonna happen in today's educational/economic/political climate.

Parents.

DH and I disagree on HOW to do it. I say, allowance to learn about money and budgeting. DH says pay the child for chores, whereas I think chores should be done because you live in the family. For a child, the allowance is a tool to teach about finances.

I do think paying a teen for extra work around the house is fine.

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#6 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:40 PM
 
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dh thinks we should leave it to teachers at school.
BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

:

That's funny.

Seriously, I'd have to ask when exactly he thinks they'd be teaching this. They barely can manage basic math and reading skills. Even when I was a kid, the most you might learn about money management in school is to spend it before the local bully beats it out of you.

I don't know any school public or private that teaches money management. That is completely the parent's responsibility. That falls under "life lesson" which schools don't teach. If schools actually taught money management, more people would have the slightest clue about it.

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#7 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:42 PM
 
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Studies show that kids don't learn about money in school. In one study high schoolers that took a finance course scored *lower* on a finance test than kids who hadn't taken the class.

Here's a link to a study showing that taking a high school finance class did not improve scores on a finance test. http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/finclass.htm

I believe that a family's attitude about money and practice has the strongest impact. I agree with Choli in regard to pocket money.

me, 28 & dh, 32.
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#8 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:45 PM
 
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For me, it's just like sex ed - I want my children to have courses on it at school but I also know that I've got to teach it at home so that we can explain our family values, morals, etc. that are not the school's responsibility to teach. And, just like with sex ed they're going to learn it somewhere. I don't want my son to learn about money from people who can't handle it or want to take advantage of him (i.e. credit card companies, predatory lenders, consumer credit counselors, all of the other money traps, etc.).

I want my son to have basic finance courses in school - it is such a huge part of life and understanding how a society functions.

But, the majority of his financial knowledge starts at home at a very young age. We do not give an allowance. He doesn't get paid for regular chores (neither do I or DH). He has opportunities to do age appropriate extra jobs around the house to earn money. He already understands we have a budget and we stick to it (for the most part ). He doesn't pitch fits at the store when he wants a toy and we tell him no. He knows that we don't have the money in our toy "jar" right now and if he has money in his spend jar (he keeps his money in jars right now) he can buy it. If not, we wait.

He's 4.5 right now. As he gets older we will probably do something similar to an allowance to help him learn more responsibility with money. For things like his clothing. Instead of us buying it for him we'll give him the money and he can spend it on the clothes he wants. If he splurges and buys one pair of jeans for the school year then that's it. He can either wear them every day or he can save his own money to buy a second or third pair. Letting him learn these lessons while he is young will enable him to take care of himself when he is older. I do not want him to have credit card debt and troubles when he graduates from college.

Don't let DH stick his head in the sand on this issue. It is so important for parents to start passing along this life skill when the kids are small. They understand a lot more than we give them credit for.

Best wishes.
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#9 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 02:45 PM
 
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Every family has a different set of principles regarding finances and money management. It's the parents' responsibility, IMO. The schools can teach economic principles, how to balance a checkbook, how to calculate returns and amortizations, etc. but they can't teach kids how to be responsible consumers. It starts at home and it starts with parents leading by example.
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#10 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 03:08 PM
 
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I think its the parents responsibility to make sure your child knows it. I would never 'leave it to the schools' However, I feel the schools should teach it as sooo many parents don't and I think a lot of why this country is in trouble is lack of general financial knowledge.

As for how we handle it, right now we don't do anything. Any money given to the kids goes into their bank accounts. I believe giving them money at this point would only be teaching them to be consumers. I see other children who get money at Christmas and birthdays and the parents say 'we'll go to the store and spend your money' - I don't want my kids to have that kind of attitude toward money. As a result, my kids do not beg for things, they do not feel deprived because we don't take them around and parade them through stores showing them what they can and cannot afford. They are happy with what they are given. As time goes on, I plan to give them the opportunity to budget and save their money, with an emphasis on saving, but I feel at their current ages (3 and 5), they have no need to be dealing with money yet, other than when they get it at a birthday, we talk about how I will put it in their savings accounts. I want to teach them that you don't spend money just because you have it.

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#11 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 03:24 PM
 
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Every family has a different set of principles regarding finances and money management. It's the parents' responsibility, IMO. The schools can teach economic principles, how to balance a checkbook, how to calculate returns and amortizations, etc. but they can't teach kids how to be responsible consumers. It starts at home and it starts with parents leading by example.

Yes yes yes.

I think that parents rely too much on schools to teach their children life skills.
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#12 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 03:27 PM
 
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I wouldn't depend on the school to teach it. We teach it ourselves, by involving our kids in financial decisions and budgeting.

We pay pocket money weekly. It is not tied to chores, but we do expect our kids to take a large part in the housework. We all pitch in with the housework and we all have a part of the family income.
This is us, as well. DD and ds2 don't get pocket money yet, but ds1 gets a weekly allowance. He also has chores to do, but they're not tied to each other...except that he recently got an allowance raise, and an increase in chores. We felt he was ready for both.

We had "consumer education" in school. What a joke...a complete and total waste of 3 hours a week of my life. Those of us who had already learned it at home learned nothing new. Those who hadn't learned it at home didn't get any of it. I notice that it's been wiped from the curriculum these days - and it was a brand new class when I went through.

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#13 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 03:37 PM
 
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Where did you husband get the idea that schools teach much about finances?
My experience at school was math word problems that I never thought about applying to my future life and a brief review of how to write a check. Balancing a checkbook may have been reviewed as well.

In Girl Scouts there was a badge I did where I needed to track a stock that was a bit of a financial education, but the majority of financial knowledge came from my parents. That was all through their example, an allowance, and the requirement that 2/3rds of the money I earned babysitting and whatnot went into the bank to be spending money in college. Christmas and Birthday gifts also pretty much went straight into savings.

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#14 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 05:17 PM
 
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We had "consumer education" in school. What a joke...a complete and total waste of 3 hours a week of my life. Those of us who had already learned it at home learned nothing new. Those who hadn't learned it at home didn't get any of it. I notice that it's been wiped from the curriculum these days - and it was a brand new class when I went through.
Lisa, I was a high school teacher way back then (8yr ago) and we had to teach Life Management classes to grade 11. I can tell you that it was a joke to most students. There was one unit on finances, which was a simplified version of math word problems on money. Teaching students to be RESPONSIBLE with money was not the intention of the unit.

You can't teach responsibilities through books. It has to be learned by examples.
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#15 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 05:26 PM
 
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I teach a middle school personal finance class, and let me tell you, by 7th grade (my students' grade level), my students already have most of their basic opinions and attitudes SET. It was very easy to figure out what kinds of examples they were seeing at home, and not much I say is going to change their minds about the "normal" way to handle money. Normal to them is whatever they see at home, so it's up to Mom and Dad to set a responsible example.

Moreover, my class was an elective. In California, there is no state requirement that personal finance is taught to kids, and I would imagine that it's a similar situation in most other states.
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#16 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:39 PM
 
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I taught high school math for a few years before having kids. I took a few days off of the algebra curriculum to talk about finance. The kids always appreciated, mostly I expect, because it was a day off from algebra. I did it very informally, conversationally, and encouraged them to talk to their parents about it too. It was generally well received.

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#17 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 08:52 PM
 
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I think it's great if schools have a finance course, but I think it is the responsibility of the parents to teach money management skills. I want DS to have a good grasp of that well before he may learn about it in school. I took an elective finance course in high school and while it was nice, I remember we learned more about stocks and the market than money management. Even if all schools did have a required finance course, I wouldn't trust it to teach the things that I think are important for DS to learn.

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#18 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 09:14 PM
 
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even if it was taught in school, wouldn't you want your kid to learn from you? I belive that finances can have a moral/ethical/personal responsibility and even religious component. You definitely want your kids to get that from you!

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#19 of 33 Old 02-11-2009, 09:29 PM
 
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Let's consider that they do teach this at the CC and Univ. level for those people obtaining a finance or accounting degree. I started out that way and learned a lot. The place I learned the most was in a CC class called "starting a small business"

Now as a elem. teacher I can say with much certainty that schools may have economics stated as a state standard that they need to teach it, however, I've yet to see a teacher teach the basics of money management.

I believe very strongly in the importance of teaching these skills/strategies to all students. Sadly, with all the other "teach to the test" skills that teachers need to teach this is way way way on the back burner.

This is the reason I am contemplating opening up my own charter school with several like-minded teacher friends in AZ. It would be in the West Phoenix area. I had planned to do this in probably 5-7 yrs after having a few more babies however, given the current situation of our educational system this plan may definitely be moved up to the next year or so.

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#20 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 07:05 AM
 
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Parents, absolutely, if we're talking about responsibility.

It would be nice if schools could teach finances as well. Personally, I wouldn't trust them to do a good job though.
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#21 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 07:09 AM
 
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Parents responsibility.
I got to learn the hard way in college, as did hubby. We've partially gotten away from that albatross, but still have student loans to show for it. Or be like my IL's and have nothing but a busted '00 Subaru and limping '86 Volvo to show for 25 years of marriage while making $300K a year for a bit of it. I guess that does help as it shows hubby and I exactly how to *not* do things... All I was ever told was "credit cards are evil." Not how, why, or anything, just that they were evil.

Unless you *really* want your children learning about things like money and sex and morals and so on in school (I've got three kids, and have yet to get the sex talk from my parents). I do know people who don't care/pay attention and trust that whatever school they send the kids off to is doing what they expect, despite the parents not looking into the curriculum or anything. Yet act surprised when certain things happen that are... oh, let's say unsavory.

We haven't come to a decision on exactly how we're going to teach our kids about money... still gathering ideas and my oldest is 5yo. So I'm absolutely no help there.

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#22 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 11:09 AM
 
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Financial education should be a taught at home by word and example subject. Schools at best give it a once over from the angle of check writing, which is fast become an unneeded skill, and maybe if you get an awesome teacher for life skills {where it's still offered, of course} you might learn how to track stocks or get/keep a good credit score. That's about it.
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#23 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 11:36 AM
 
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Originally Posted by choli View Post
I wouldn't depend on the school to teach it. We teach it ourselves, by involving our kids in financial decisions and budgeting.

We pay pocket money weekly. It is not tied to chores, but we do expect our kids to take a large part in the housework. We all pitch in with the housework and we all have a part of the family income.
I agree. Financial practices are very much a personal thing. My financial values are not at all mainstream. For example, DH and I do not believe in taking on debt for purchases other than homes, cars, and education. I know that I learned how to live frugally and debt free from my parents and grandparents. I hope to pass these lessons on to DS when he gets older. I am already teaching him how to save money in is piggy bank and he understands that money has value and can purchase things...not shabby for a 2 year old.

Now I do think it is ok for schools to teach about the stock market, how the world economy works, trade agreements, etc. I had an economics course in highschool where we learned these things. Something that is lacking in education but would be beneficial is an overview of US tax code, how debt and credit work, and keeping a checking account.

But for the most part, I feel that finances are taught by the example we give our children.
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#24 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 12:54 PM
 
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At home, definitely!!!!

I don't see how anyone could just leave it to the school. The first (and only) money management I had was a 9weeks course in the tenth grade. By then, I was already working a bit (tutoring and babysitting) and thanks to my parents, I had a really great grasp of how to handle money. I saved almost everything I made. The money course in the 9th grade was a basic course, teaching checkbooks, budgeting, etc, but it wasn't very good. My mom filled in the blanks on a lot of things.

I wish, though, that I'd been taught a little more about debt, in a way that I could relate to. Maybe it would have saved me my current situation.
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#25 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 01:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by velochic View Post
Every family has a different set of principles regarding finances and money management. It's the parents' responsibility, IMO. The schools can teach economic principles, how to balance a checkbook, how to calculate returns and amortizations, etc. but they can't teach kids how to be responsible consumers. It starts at home and it starts with parents leading by example.

This.

I'm a huge supporter of public education. But schools should be concentrating on academics and they have more than enough to deal with in that arena.

Parents should be teaching their children life skills.
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#26 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 01:48 PM
 
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parents...if they know what they are talking about.

My parents had a very dysfunctional relationship, my father "controlled" their money and budgeted the household money and then my mother would sabotage that by reckless spending and then lying about it. He was a financial genius and she was a credit train wreck. It was one of the many things that destroyed their marriage. No one in my home ever discussed how to balance a checkbook, save money, whether or not to invest, credit cards, etc.

In school, we never learned any practical financial advice AT ALL. It was not part of the curriculum UNLESS you were in marketing classes, where it was covered lightly. If you were taking the 4 year liberal arts program which is what the vast majority of people in school did then it was something that wasn't taught.

I didn't actually get a financial clue until last year. Really. Lots of trial and error, lots of debt . But I have to say that in the last year we have become very frugal and are successfully paying down our debt.

I think that it should be a part of basic curriculum in high schools (or junior high too, why not) because it's kind of like sex ed: not everyone's parent's are talking about it and letting a kid out into the world without that knowledge can certainly have an adverse effect on our society, YK?

I absolutely think that this kind of life skill thing should be taught at home but not every child's home is the ideal place to learn.
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#27 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 06:23 PM
 
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Well, I believe children *will* learn from their parents even if the intention isn't necessarily set out as such. The family atmosphere will teach (good or bad) about money (and lots of other things) whether we (as parents) intend it or not. With that in mind, I am all about consciously teaching at our DD's age/maturity level. Anything the school teaches is extra. If it contradicts what she has learned from us, she can choose to say something and open a discussion at school or stay quiet at school and ask us for clarification or simply absorb the differences and sort it out for herself. I feel confident our teachings will outweigh any contrary teachings mostly due to examples provided. We model our beliefs on a daily basis and we give her tools to work with on her own and with our guidance. She is 7 and understands quite a bit about money already.

Even if we left it up to the school, we wouldn't REALLY be just leaving it up to the school, IMO. She would be learning from us and our example, it just may be harder for her to figure out the details. Just like the PP who mentioned her parents who have a dysfunctional relationship with money (and each other). The PP DID learn something from her parents. It just may not be ideal monetary lessons, KWIM?

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#28 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 09:31 PM
 
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Parents, absolutely, if we're talking about responsibility.

It would be nice if schools could teach finances as well. Personally, I wouldn't trust them to do a good job though.
Actually, they might do a fantastic job. One of the teachers in my school embeds personal finance into all his math classes. And quite frankly, he does a better job than most of the parents who have leased hub caps on their cars. Why? Cause he's been well-trained and isn't relying on his own personal habits to model to the kids. Many of us are in the situation we're in now cause we were rather ignorant about finances. Myself included. I wish I had had a course in personal finances since I certainly didn't get it from home.
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#29 of 33 Old 02-12-2009, 10:15 PM
 
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I teach a middle school personal finance class, and let me tell you, by 7th grade (my students' grade level), my students already have most of their basic opinions and attitudes SET. It was very easy to figure out what kinds of examples they were seeing at home....
You know, that's not entirely true, either. We had a very good financial example set for us at home. In most ways, I've always been very good with money (there are a few exceptions) and my mom has always called me a "born miser". My brother, not so much. My sister? EEK! There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to the differences, but they set in very early. (My grandmother used to give each of us $20.00 when we left on our family vacation every year. Every year, my brother and sister were out of money before I broke the $20. It's just the way we were wired.)

That said...yeah, if kids are seeing a of fiscal irresponsibility at home, they're not generally going to develop good money habits. I really don't think the schools could do very much in this area, even if they tried.

As for the poster who said that the course was a joke to most of the students - that's also true. Nobody in our class took "Consumer Education" seriously...and nobody in ds1's class takes "Planning" seriously. I don't think this sort of thing carries well in a classroom setting.

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
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Originally Posted by honeydee View Post
My parents had a very dysfunctional relationship, my father "controlled" their money and budgeted the household money and then my mother would sabotage that by reckless spending and then lying about it. He was a financial genius and she was a credit train wreck. It was one of the many things that destroyed their marriage.
That's kind of like me and my ex, except that I was the one trying to manage the money, and he was the saboteur.

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

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