Nov 07, 2018

Schools In The News (November 7, 2018)

  • Dubuque Community Schools (IA) speeding up implementation of the Iowa state personal finance requirement (KCRG): 

Senior High School business teacher Jim Evans said that's a lot to pack into one semester, but that it's needed. "This class is needed by everybody," he said.

He's currently teaching a financial literacy course. It's not required, but offered for students to take voluntarily. On Wednesday, his class was working on credit and interest rates. He said they cover many other topics. "We just finished a unit on banking. Before that we had a unit on consumer spending. And then next unit will be on investments," Evans said.

Most students come to his class with little financial knowledge, said Evans. Once they start learning the curriculum, he can see them making connections. "The lights are going on. It’s clicking," he said. "A lot of times they go home and talk to moms and dads about it, and that helps."

  • Seattle Times queries their readers, asking "Should personal finance be taught in school?" Jeff Brumley, educator at Sultan High School (WA) weighed in:

What’s disappointing to me, however, is that I only have 60 students this year out of 500+ in our high school. I don’t know that I have ever talked to anyone who doesn’t think that personal finance should be a required class, yet there hasn’t been much of a push to make it so. It seems to be gathering momentum but the biggest issue I see is “what do you give up?” We already have so many other requirements that students barely have room in their schedules as it is. With four years of English, three years each of math, science, and social studies, two years of arts, health/PE and world language, not to mention the additional math and science courses that college-bound students are encouraged to take, and there just isn’t much room.

  • Valley Center/Pauma Unified School District (CA) stepping up their financial education efforts (

According to the school district, “The feedback from students is positive as we prepare students to be financially literate.  Justin Rodriguez, a senior, who is taking Economics with Thomas Whitcomb, was asked about his class and said, ‘It’s more beneficial and helpful knowing that I will be prepared for my future with the basics of how to deal with money.”  Justin added that the experience ‘Provides a risk-free environment to learn about credit, debt, and investments so that I can be more successful in my future.’ ” 

  • Parma City (OH) schools offering financial literacy nights to 5th to 9th graders (

When it comes to financial planning, it's never too early to start thinking about your future. For the Parma City Schools, that now includes inviting students in grades five through nine to CBS Connects' three Financial Literacy Nights being held at the district high schools.

"The reason why we're doing it is because with financial literacy, it's a complex marketplace," Career and Technical Education Director Kristin Plageman said. "We believe that early instruction is important so that youth can achieve financial security as adults.

  • William Woolf, Business Teacher at Sun Valley High School (NC) appears on Dave Ramsey show; start video at 35:22

About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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