Many people may date themselves when they make a reference to home economics or shop classes they took during high school, but chances are if you asked these people if the skills they learned were relevant, they'd say "absolutely!" The same can be said for personal finance education. In recent years, we've seen momentum among states that have passed laws requiring high schools to offer personal finance education. A number of studies and polls have been conducted around the importance of personal finance in our education system and those in favor of implementing these courses is immense. Here is a few pieces of data on where we currently stand with finances:
- Most experts agree, 80% of personal finance decisions are behavioral driven. This isn't just about excel spreadsheets and calculating taxes. How, if at all, money is discussed when growing up can impact a person's relationship with finances for the rest of their life.
- 88% of adults in America support requiring personal finance in high school. This makes sense considering the average American household is carrying over $9,000 of credit card debt.
- In 2023, roughly 25% of U.S. high schoolers will attend a school where personal finance course is required and about 47% percent will attend a school where personal finance is an elective. In the next five years, this number is expected to increase.
For those with children, it's imperative to begin teaching your kids simple financial habits sooner than later. Saving early and often, the power of compounding money and returns over time - over time, these conversations will become engrained in the behaviors they will exhibit throughout their lives. The education system can be a phenomenal tool to teach your child simple financial tools, but there's nothing like hearing it from a trusted source and witnessing the success of someone with smart financial habits. Even for adults, it's never too late to get educated on financial concepts and amend your relationship with money. Isn't it time we make some progress, so our future generations are better equipped than those before us?