Most adults in the United States support guaranteed access to personal financial education for high school students.

Eighty-eight percent of adults surveyed by the National Endowment for Financial Education say their state requires a semester or year of personal finance courses to graduate. A survey of 1,030 adults was conducted in March.

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“Americans overwhelmingly recognize the importance of learning money skills from an early age, and this poll shows nationwide support for making personal finance a part of learning in all schools. It corroborates what has been shown: financial education in Tuesday’s statement.

Additionally, 80% of those surveyed said they wished they had had to take a personal finance course in order to graduate from high school.

The study found that older adults, higher-income earners, and those with a secondary or higher degree were far more likely than others to support mandatory personal financial education, and that such I also found that they answered that they wished there was a class. Non-Hispanic white respondents were more likely than black or Hispanic respondents to support a personal finance course.

“Financial education is arguably the foundation for acquiring and applying knowledge, but it makes clear that education alone is insufficient to overcome systemic barriers,” Hensley said. says. “There are many fundamental factors that are part of the personal finance ecosystem that work together to achieve financial competence.”

growing trend

In recent years, an increasing number of states have mandated personal finance courses for high school students. In her March, Florida became the largest state to mandate individual funding in high schools, and Georgia’s governor is set to sign a similar bill into law this week.

According to a recent report from the nonprofit Next Gen Personal Finance, 25% of US high school students are now guaranteed access to personal finance courses.

Additionally, more states have effective legislation that, if passed, would mandate personal financial education, with some expected to become law this year.

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Such mandates at the state level are important to ensure that all students have equal access to personal finance courses. Without laws to guarantee such classes, students of color and those living in low-income school districts are much less likely to receive a solid private financial education.

In a recent blog post, Hensley said, “Legislation, state support and access to reliable resources can make a big difference in leveling equitable access for all students.” ‘s requirement will allow all schools to offer this important class to their students, regardless of zip code.”

what’s next

Hensley and Next Gen Personal Finance not only advocate legislation that would allow all high school students to take personal finance classes, but also point to teacher training as an important piece of the puzzle.

Without effective professional development, it can be difficult for teachers to feel prepared to teach personal finance. According to Hensley, it influences the outcome of the classes they teach.

“Quality of instruction is as important as access,” Hensley writes.

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