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Financial Literacy Grant Program Proposed by The Senate

By Erik Folgate

Consumerism Commentary reported on a financial literacy education program that would allocate $250 million dollars a year toward personal finance education in the K through 12 public school system and public colleges. The bill would provide grants to schools that want to implement the education program, but it might require that the school make it a required class for graduation. I agree with Flexo that it shouldn’t be a required course that replaces the other core classes. I know that in Florida you are required as a senior to take a semester of American Government and a semester of American Economics for graduation. I think the most logical thing to do would be to use the grant money for training economics teachers to implement the persoanl finance education into their existing course and also use the materials for teaching materials.

My main concerns with this are the teaching materials that will be used. It will be counter-productive if the schools end up buying garbage cirriculum provided by companies that are either owned or financially supported by credit card companies or large banks. These organizations only want to indoctrinate young people to borrow money and borrow even more money. The other concern that I have is the amount. Don’t get me wrong, $250 million dollars is a lot of money, but spread out over thousands of schools, I don’t know how much it will help the lack of personal financial education. Still, at least there are senators out there who recognize the need for preparing young people to manage their money better, and I am thankful that they are doing something.

My solution:
I think the long-term solution to preparing young people for managing their money better is by teaching young parents to manage their money better through private financial literacy education. Parents have a huge influence on their children, and they lead more by their actions than their words. If more parents are responsible with their money, they’ll raise children who are responsible with money. What do you think the solution is to our lack of financial education in America?

Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

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  • Minimum Wage

    If tax dollars will be spent to teach kids financial literacy, shouldn’t it also be offered to adults? Otherwise you’ll have a situation where adults are left eating dust.

  • Julieana Smith

    I just landed on your blog and found it to be very informative and interesting. I congratulate you for creating such a wonderful blog. Most of our moderators are a regular visitor of your blog. I would be highly obliged if you would spare some precious moment of yours and allow us to contact you for giving an interview or allow us to review your blog in a finance community site having 100K+ members.
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  • Angie N.

    There is a non-profit organization, not sure if it is nation wide, called Junior Achievement (501c(3)), where volunteer teachers go into public school classrooms (K-12) and teach financial literacy over a five week period.

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