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A penny saved ...
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Penny Rhinehart, vice president of Bank of North Georgia and Newton Plaza branch banking office manager, wants to teach children the old adage, "a penny saved, is a penny earned."

On the morning of Feb. 1, students at Ficquett Elementary School have the opportunity to open a BNG savings account with a minimum of $1 initial deposit.

"I really feel like it's good for the bank to help teach and encourage savings," Rhinehart said.

For a few weeks now, BNG representatives have made weekly appearances on Ficquett's closed-circuit television morning announcements, letting students know about the savings program. Flyers also have circulated for students to take the information to their parents.

Rhinehart said parents must be on the account with their children and can deposit into it whenever they wish.

"The amount in it is really not the purpose," Rhinehart said. "We just want students to start thinking about saving."

She added the account will draw some interest just as traditional savings accounts do, and students who open an account will receive a complimentary piggy bank so they can save at home as well.

"In March, Ficquett's Quest students are going to help us by almost being sort of a teller," Rhinehart said.

Quest students also will visit the BNG location in Newton Plaza to see basic operations at the bank.

 Last October, BNG became a Partner in Education for Ficquett and immediately began building a relationship with the school.

"One of us goes to the school every Wednesday and we go read or whatever a teacher needs us to do," Rhinehart said.

She added she hopes the savings account program will continue into next year so BNG representatives can talk to parents about the program at Ficquett's open house.