4 steps educators can take today to implement Florida's newly required personal finance elective for fall 2019

May 21, 2019
Advocacy, Professional Development

A shift in Florida's education policy demands a quick turnaround for high schools

If you follow the Florida legislature closely (as we do at NGPF), you may have seen that House Bill 7071 passed on May 2nd, and is currently awaiting signature on Governor Ron DeSantis's desk. One of the key provisions of this new workforce readiness law is, "requiring school districts to offer one-half credit in financial literacy as an elective." You can read the full text of the law here.
There is still uncertainty around some specifics of the law, which we'll continue to monitor closely, but what is certain is that all high schools in the state must now offer a 1-semester personal finance elective this upcoming fall. Florida district administrators, school leaders, and teachers are all faced with this sudden paradigm shift with just a few weeks left in the 2018-2019 school year.
Educators can take the reins at their schools to make this transition a success in both the short and long term. In fact, at NGPF, we see this new law - despite falling short of its original vision - as an opportunity to build momentum and capacity around teaching personal finance in Florida. By dialing in on pedagogy, professional development, and quality free resources, teachers can make personal finance - as it is in so many other schools around the country - the most popular elective in their schools. This will only make the case stronger that every student should be required to take a standalone personal finance course to graduate high school in the state.

4 steps teachers can take today to lead their schools' adoption of the new law

1. Alert your schools' administration teams. 

This is a WILD time of year for teachers and school administrators alike, so no one would be surprised if this last-minute shift got buried in the end-of-the-year madness. But teachers must demand that this crucial course doesn't get overlooked. If they haven't already, school administrators will take their districts' formal steps to list the course and register students for SY2019-20, all before this school year ends.

2. Share NGPF's teaching resources, and all your other favorites, with your colleagues.

Did you know NGPF has a hidden, Teachers Only referral feature where educators can invite their colleagues to join our site? Check it out here.

Why should you invite your colleagues to NGPF? As it currently stands, teachers with Math, Business, Social Studies, OR Economics certifications might now be asked to teach a personal finance section in your district. You can give them access to world-class curriculum and professional development for the course, all 100% free. You can be their (Fin)Hero!

3. Review NGPF's Semester Course with your department and administration team.

NGPF offers a FREE, fully scoped and sequenced, project-based semester curriculum that thousands of teachers in all 50 states use to engage their students and build financial capability.

4. Register for a personal finance professional development opportunity.

Get involved with "the best PD I have ever attended in my 26 year teaching career." Build confidence, hone your content expertise, and practice new pedagogical strategies with educators from around Florida, and the country.

NGPF has already scheduled lots of great PD opportunities in the coming months to help teachers ROCK this course:

  • 5 FREE FinCamps throughout Florida for SY19-20. FinCamp is our celebrated 1-day professional development model: 30-50 teachers join together for a day of collaboration, content, and personal finance pedagogy.
  • 3 FREE Webinars essential for NGPF beginners for Summer 2019. Our Semester Course is 90 complete lessons aligned to CPALMS, and we've got webinars on using Google Docs and Classrooms if you need to get up and running in a hurry. 
  • 18 FREE Virtual FinCamps for Summer 2019. All the magic of an in-person FinCamp in an interactive, virtual format. Each Virtual FinCamp has a specific content focus (Investing, Budgeting, etc.)

About the Author

Christian Sherrill

Christian comes to NGPF from the world of classroom instruction, where he was a teacher for three years at a public middle school in El Sobrante, California. After leaving the classroom, he joined math tutoring company, Zeal Learning, to help grow their educator-facing sales and marketing efforts. He's no stranger to making a dollar stretch - while living in the Bay Area on his teacher salary he paid down over $40k in student loans in the span of 3 years. He's thrilled to share those lessons with teachers and students around the U.S.